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 which could 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 3 stocks with substantial yields, that ultimately, we have rated "Hold."

Ardmore Shipping

Dividend Yield: 10.80%

Ardmore Shipping

(NYSE:

ASC

) shares currently have a dividend yield of 10.80%.

Ardmore Shipping Corporation engages in the seaborne transportation of petroleum products and chemicals through product and chemical tankers worldwide. As of December 31, 2014, the company operated 14 vessels, as well as had 10 vessels under construction. The company has a P/E ratio of 18.22.

The average volume for Ardmore Shipping has been 317,400 shares per day over the past 30 days. Ardmore Shipping has a market cap of $299.7 million and is part of the transportation industry. Shares are up 0.7% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates

Ardmore Shipping

as a

hold

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, compelling growth in net income and expanding profit margins. However, as a counter to these strengths, we find that the company has favored debt over equity in the management of its balance sheet.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • ASC's very impressive revenue growth greatly exceeded the industry average of 36.9%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues leaped by 150.2%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • ARDMORE SHIPPING CORP has shown improvement in its earnings for its most recently reported quarter when compared with the same quarter a year earlier. The company has demonstrated a pattern of positive earnings per share growth over the past year. We feel that this trend should continue. This trend suggests that the performance of the business is improving. During the past fiscal year, ARDMORE SHIPPING CORP turned its bottom line around by earning $0.05 versus -$0.21 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.40 versus $0.05).
  • Current return on equity exceeded its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a clear sign of strength within the company. Compared to other companies in the Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, ARDMORE SHIPPING CORP has outperformed in comparison with the industry average, but has underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500.
  • This stock has managed to decline in share value by 4.92% over the past twelve months. Despite the fact that it has already risen in the past year, there is currently no conclusive evidence that warrants the purchase or sale of this stock.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio of 1.12 is relatively high when compared with the industry average, suggesting a need for better debt level management. Even though the debt-to-equity ratio is weak, ASC's quick ratio is somewhat strong at 1.45, demonstrating the ability to handle short-term liquidity needs.

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America First Multifamily Investors

Dividend Yield: 9.60%

America First Multifamily Investors

(NASDAQ:

ATAX

) shares currently have a dividend yield of 9.60%.

America First Multifamily Investors, L.P. acquires, holds, sells, and deals in a portfolio of mortgage revenue bonds that have been issued to provide construction and/or permanent financing for multifamily and student housing, and commercial properties. The company has a P/E ratio of 22.57.

The average volume for America First Multifamily Investors has been 131,400 shares per day over the past 30 days. America First Multifamily Investors has a market cap of $312.7 million and is part of the real estate industry. Shares are down 0.9% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates

America First Multifamily Investors

as a

hold

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth and expanding profit margins. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including unimpressive growth in net income, disappointing return on equity and weak operating cash flow.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • The revenue growth greatly exceeded the industry average of 14.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 27.5%. 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.
  • The gross profit margin for AMERICA FIRST MULTIFAMILY-LP is currently very high, coming in at 79.17%. Regardless of ATAX's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, ATAX's net profit margin of 18.03% is significantly lower than the industry average.
  • AMERICA FIRST MULTIFAMILY-LP's earnings per share declined by 33.3% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. The company has reported a trend of declining earnings per share over the past year. However, the consensus estimate suggests that this trend should reverse in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, AMERICA FIRST MULTIFAMILY-LP reported lower earnings of $0.25 versus $0.34 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($0.28 versus $0.25).
  • The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and greatly underperformed compared to the Thrifts & Mortgage Finance industry average. The net income has decreased by 23.2% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, dropping from $3.31 million to $2.54 million.
  • The company's current return on equity has slightly decreased from the same quarter one year prior. This implies a minor weakness in the organization. When compared to other companies in the Thrifts & Mortgage Finance industry and the overall market, AMERICA FIRST MULTIFAMILY-LP's return on equity is below that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.

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American Capital Senior Floating

Dividend Yield: 11.90%

American Capital Senior Floating

(NASDAQ:

ACSF

) shares currently have a dividend yield of 11.90%.

American Capital Senior Floating, Ltd. is a close ended fixed income mutual fund launched by American Capital Asset Management, LLC. The fund is managed by American Capital ACSF Management, LLC. It invests in fixed income markets of the United States.

The average volume for American Capital Senior Floating has been 47,000 shares per day over the past 30 days. American Capital Senior Floating has a market cap of $98.0 million and is part of the financial services industry. Shares are down 18% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates

American Capital Senior Floating

as a

hold

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, expanding profit margins and good cash flow from operations. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including feeble growth in the company's earnings per share, deteriorating net income and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 5.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 9.5%. 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.
  • The gross profit margin for AMERICAN CAPITAL SR FLTG LTD is currently very high, coming in at 83.08%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Regardless of the strong results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of -144.33% is in-line with the industry average.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 162.28% to $1.70 million when compared to the same quarter last year. Despite an increase in cash flow of 162.28%, AMERICAN CAPITAL SR FLTG LTD is still growing at a significantly lower rate than the industry average of 264.01%.
  • AMERICAN CAPITAL SR FLTG LTD has experienced a steep decline in earnings per share in the most recent quarter in comparison to its performance from the same quarter a year ago. For the next year, the market is expecting a contraction of 21.6% in earnings ($0.29 versus $0.37).
  • The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and the Capital Markets industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 3026.0% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $0.25 million to -$7.20 million.

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