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5 Buy-Rated Dividend Stocks

Editor's Note: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model.

TheStreet Ratings' stock model projects a stock's total return potential over a 12-month period including both price appreciation and dividends. Our Buy, Hold or Sell ratings designate how we expect these stocks to perform against a general benchmark of the equities market and interest rates.

While plenty of high-yield opportunities exist, investors must always consider the safety of their dividend and the total return potential of their investment. It is not uncommon for a struggling company to suspend high-yielding dividends and subsequently result in precipitous share price declines.

TheStreet Ratings' stock rating model views dividends favorably, but not so much that other factors are disregarded. Our model gauges the relationship between risk and reward in several ways, including: the pricing drawdown as compared to potential profit volatility, i.e. how much one is willing to risk in order to earn profits?; the level of acceptable volatility for highly performing stocks; the current valuation as compared to projected earnings growth; and the financial strength of the underlying company as compared to its stock's valuation as compared to its stock's performance.

These and many more derived observations are then combined, ranked, weighted, and scenario-tested to create a more complete analysis. The result is a systematic and disciplined method of selecting stocks. As always, stock ratings should not be treated as gospel — rather, use them as a starting point for your own research.

The following pages contain our analysis of 5 stocks with substantial yields, that ultimately, we have rated "Buy."

Healthcare Realty

Dividend Yield: 4.20%

Healthcare Realty (NYSE:HR) shares currently have a dividend yield of 4.20%.

Healthcare Realty Trust Incorporated is an independent real estate investment trust. The firm invests in real estate markets of the United States. The company has a P/E ratio of 283.80. Currently there are 3 analysts that rate Healthcare Realty a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 9 rate it a hold.

The average volume for Healthcare Realty has been 506,100 shares per day over the past 30 days. Healthcare Realty has a market cap of $2.5 billion and is part of the real estate industry. Shares are up 19.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Healthcare Realty as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, solid stock price performance, good cash flow from operations and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • Despite its growing revenue, the company underperformed as compared with the industry average of 16.4%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 8.2%. This growth in revenue does not appear to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, displayed by a decline in earnings per share.
  • Compared to its closing price of one year ago, HR's share price has jumped by 29.39%, exceeding the performance of the broader market during that same time frame. Looking ahead, the stock's sharp rise over the last year has already helped drive it to a level which is relatively expensive compared to the rest of its industry. We feel, however, that other strengths this company displays justify these higher price levels.
  • HEALTHCARE REALTY TRUST INC has exprienced a steep decline in earnings per share in the most recent quarter in comparison to its performance from the same quarter a year ago. This company has reported somewhat volatile earnings recently. But, we feel it is poised for EPS growth in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, HEALTHCARE REALTY TRUST INC turned its bottom line around by earning $0.10 versus -$0.04 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($0.19 versus $0.10).
  • Net operating cash flow has increased to $44.13 million or 16.77% when compared to the same quarter last year. Despite an increase in cash flow, HEALTHCARE REALTY TRUST INC's cash flow growth rate is still lower than the industry average growth rate of 38.95%.
  • The return on equity has improved slightly when compared to the same quarter one year prior. This can be construed as a modest strength in the organization. Compared to other companies in the Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, HEALTHCARE REALTY TRUST INC underperformed against that of the industry average and is significantly less than that of the S&P 500.

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