NEW YORK ( Stockpickr) -- Big vs. Small. That's the debate investors often face as they try to figure if large-cap stocks or small-cap stocks represent the best opportunity to make money.
For some, the debate is moot. Instead, they seek out good investments in the "tweener" crowd: mid-cap stocks. The logic is pretty straightforward. Large-cap stocks tend to have a high degree of foreign exposure -- especially in Europe. And small-caps can prove to be a dangerous group if the markets get choppy. Investors tend to flee these smaller company stocks whenever fresh economic concerns arise.
Mid-cap stocks, on the other hand, have less international exposure than large-cap stocks but less volatility than small-cap stocks. Conveniently, the folks at Standard & Poors make it easy for us. They lump the top large-cap stocks into the S&P 500, the most mature small-cap stocks into the S&P 600, and the "Goldlilocks" of the group, mid-caps, into the S&P 400.Running through all of the members of the mid-cap index, a clear theme emerges: Many high-quality companies offer very juicy dividend yields. That's a real virtue in an era when traditional fixed investments like government bonds offer miniscule payouts.