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5 Ex-Dividend Stocks With Buy Ratings

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The following stocks go ex-dividend Thursday, meaning an investor must purchase the shares Wednesday to qualify for the next dividend payment: Apache (APA), CVS Caremark (CVS), Hormel Foods (HRL), Washington Post (WPO) and Weight Watchers (WTW).

Each of the stocks received a buy rating from TheStreet Ratings.

Apache

The independent energy company is scheduled to report first-quarter results on May 3. Analysts, on average, anticipate earnings of $3.07 a share on revenue of $4.56 billion.

"APA continues to trade at the cheapest valuation in the large cap E&P sector despite signs the bear case in Egypt is not playing out," Credit Suisse analysts wrote in a March 27 report. "We believe this is a compelling entry point as its portfolio should deliver 8-10% production growth in 2012. We also expect strong growth in 2013 (7-9%) as more than 50% of this year's capex program is targeting longer-duration projects."

Forward Annual Dividend Yield: 0.7%

Rated "B (Buy)" by TheStreet Ratings: The company's fourth-quarter gross profit margin was about the same as it was the previous year.

Apache has weak liquidity. Its Quick Ratio is 0.68, which demonstrates a lack of ability to meet its short-term cash needs.

In the fourth quarter, stockholders' net worth increased 18.93% from the prior year.

TheStreet Ratings' price target is $109.61.

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