Though European governments are being forced to cut back on a range of social services, they can't afford to skimp on infrastructure. Clean drinking water and up-to-date wastewater treatment plants are deemed essential, which ensures a steady flow of contracts for this builder and operator of water plants.
France-based Veolia Environnement (VE) has spent the past few years shedding non-core assets in a bid to pare a debt load that had grown too large. Those asset sales are largely complete, and the company's current size and cash flow enables it to produce roughly 75 to 90 cents in dividends per share each year. That works out to be a yield in the 6% to 7.5% range. Analysts currently are targeting that 90 cents figure for 2013, which would make this one of the highest-yields you can find in the area of water infrastructure.
Fly LeasingTo avoid the appearance of overwhelming debt loads, major airlines often lease rather than buy new planes. And that's created a lucrative business for the industry's middle men, who can charge hefty leasing rates in exchange for absorbing the risk that the global economy will tank and leased aircraft will be returned. Looking at the income statement of Ireland-based Fly Leasing (FLY - Get Report), you can tell that these are profitable times for the airline leasing industry. After three straight years of an 80 cent a share annual dividend payment, Fly Leasing recently hiked the payout to annual equivalent of 88 cents a share. Beyond the impressive 7% dividend yield, this stock should appeal to value investors, as book value stands at $18.54 a share, roughly 50% higher than the current stock price. If the global economy holds up in 2013, and airline travel continues its phase of modest growth, concerns of another industry downturn--as we saw in 2008--should recede, and investors are likely to push this stock closer to book value. Telecom Italia Italian consumers are feeling pinched these days. Policy makers in Rome have failed to tackle the country's fiscal crisis and consumer spending has been slashed to only essential goods and services. Luckily for Telecom Italia, (TI - Get Report), wireless and wireline services are a "must-have."