Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer

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 "Sell."

Dynagas LNG Partners

Dividend Yield: 11.60%

Dynagas LNG Partners

(NYSE:

DLNG

) shares currently have a dividend yield of 11.60%.

Dynagas LNG Partners LP, through its subsidiaries, operates in the seaborne transportation industry worldwide. The company owns and operates liquefied natural gas (LNG) vessels. The company has a P/E ratio of 8.90.

The average volume for Dynagas LNG Partners has been 87,300 shares per day over the past 30 days. Dynagas LNG Partners has a market cap of $299.2 million and is part of the transportation industry. Shares are down 9.4% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Monday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates

Dynagas LNG Partners

as a

sell

. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its generally high debt management risk and generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • Currently the debt-to-equity ratio of 1.92 is quite high overall and when compared to the industry average, suggesting that the current management of debt levels should be re-evaluated. To add to this, DLNG has a quick ratio of 0.50, this demonstrates the lack of ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs.
  • DLNG's stock share price has done very poorly compared to where it was a year ago: Despite any rallies, the net result is that it is down by 39.80%, which is also worse that the performance of the S&P 500 Index. Investors have so far failed to pay much attention to the earnings improvements the company has managed to achieve over the last quarter. Naturally, the overall market trend is bound to be a significant factor. However, in one sense, the stock's sharp decline last year is a positive for future investors, making it cheaper (in proportion to its earnings over the past year) than most other stocks in its industry. But due to other concerns, we feel the stock is still not a good buy right now.
  • The gross profit margin for DYNAGAS LNG PARTNERS LP is currently very high, coming in at 82.56%. Regardless of DLNG's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, DLNG's net profit margin of 41.76% significantly outperformed against the industry.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 81.60% to $26.39 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, DYNAGAS LNG PARTNERS LP has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of -53.49%.
  • Compared to other companies in the Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, DYNAGAS LNG PARTNERS LP has underperformed in comparison with the industry average, but has exceeded that of the S&P 500.

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Student Transportation

Dividend Yield: 7.50%

Student Transportation

(NASDAQ:

STB

) shares currently have a dividend yield of 7.50%.

Student Transportation Inc., together with its subsidiaries, provides school bus transportation services in the United States and Canada. It offers contracted, managed, special needs transportation, direct-to-parent, and charter services. The company has a P/E ratio of 226.50.

The average volume for Student Transportation has been 170,200 shares per day over the past 30 days. Student Transportation has a market cap of $434.0 million and is part of the transportation industry. Shares are down 29.5% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Monday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates

Student Transportation

as a

sell

. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself, feeble growth in its earnings per share, deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity and poor profit margins.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • Despite any intermediate fluctuations, we have only bad news to report on this stock's performance over the last year: it has tumbled by 31.63%, worse than the S&P 500's performance. Consistent with the plunge in the stock price, the company's earnings per share are down 33.33% compared to the year-earlier quarter. Although its share price is down sharply from a year ago, do not assume that it can now be tagged as cheap and attractive. The reality is that, based on its current price in relation to its earnings, STB is still more expensive than most of the other companies in its industry.
  • STUDENT TRANSPORTATION INC's earnings per share declined by 33.3% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. The company has suffered a declining pattern earnings per share over the past two years. During the past fiscal year, STUDENT TRANSPORTATION INC reported lower earnings of $0.02 versus $0.04 in the prior year.
  • 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 the Road & Rail industry average. The net income has significantly decreased by 27.2% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $2.60 million to $1.89 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. Compared to other companies in the Road & Rail industry and the overall market, STUDENT TRANSPORTATION INC's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • The gross profit margin for STUDENT TRANSPORTATION INC is rather low; currently it is at 23.13%. It has decreased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 1.21% significantly trails the industry average.

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Wheeler Real Estate Investment

Dividend Yield: 10.60%

Wheeler Real Estate Investment

(NASDAQ:

WHLR

) shares currently have a dividend yield of 10.60%.

Wheeler Real Estate Investment Trust, Inc. engages in acquiring, financing, developing, leasing, owning, and managing real estate properties in the mid-Atlantic, southeast, and southwest United States.

The average volume for Wheeler Real Estate Investment has been 47,100 shares per day over the past 30 days. Wheeler Real Estate Investment has a market cap of $107.7 million and is part of the real estate industry. Shares are down 51% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Monday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates

Wheeler Real Estate Investment

as a

sell

. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its deteriorating net income, weak operating cash flow, generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself and feeble growth in its earnings per share.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • 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 Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 224.5% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from -$1.16 million to -$3.76 million.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly decreased to -$4.74 million or 7622.22% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.
  • Despite any intermediate fluctuations, we have only bad news to report on this stock's performance over the last year: it has tumbled by 56.47%, worse than the S&P 500's performance. Consistent with the plunge in the stock price, the company's earnings per share are down 370.58% compared to the year-earlier quarter. Naturally, the overall market trend is bound to be a significant factor. However, in one sense, the stock's sharp decline last year is a positive for future investors, making it cheaper (in proportion to its earnings over the past year) than most other stocks in its industry. But due to other concerns, we feel the stock is still not a good buy right now.
  • WHEELER REAL ESTATE INVT TR 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. The company has reported a trend of declining earnings per share over the past two years. However, the consensus estimate suggests that this trend should reverse in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, WHEELER REAL ESTATE INVT TR reported poor results of -$1.80 versus -$0.94 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings (-$1.19 versus -$1.80).
  • The company's current return on equity greatly increased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of significant strength within the corporation. Compared to other companies in the Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) industry and the overall market, WHEELER REAL ESTATE INVT TR's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.

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