Top 5 Large-Cap Stocks for July 1

TSC Ratings TheStreet.com Ratings provides exclusive stock, ETF and mutual fund recommendations using proprietary tools. Our "safety-first" approach aims to reduce risk while achieving performance on a total return basis.

Each business day, we compile a list of the top five stocks in five categories -- fast-growth, all-around value, large-cap, mid-cap and small-cap.

Today, large-cap stocks are in the spotlight. These companies have market caps over $10 billion and receive "buy"-ratings from our proprietary quantitative model, which considers more than 60 factors. The stocks are ordered by their potential to appreciate.

McDonald's ( MCD) franchises and operates McDonald's restaurants worldwide, offering various food items, soft drinks, coffee and other beverages. We have rated McDonald's buy since June 2007.

The company's fiscal first quarter revenue declined 10% to $5.07 billion, but net income increased marginally to $980 million, and EPS jumped 7% to 87 cents as net margin remained strong at 20%. However, a 32% decline in the cash balance to $1.98 billion is a weakness. But a quick ratio of 1.3 and a debt-to-equity ratio of .82 indicate a conservative financial position.

Shares of McDonald's have declined 8% in 2009, underperforming the Dow and S&P 500. But over a one-year period McDonald's is up 2% while the Dow has dropped 26% and the S&P 500 has fallen 28%. At its current share price, the stock offers a dividend yield of 3.48%, which is higher than S&P 500 average of 3.2%.

Medco Health Solutions ( MHS) is one of the nation's largest pharmacy benefit managers, providing sophisticated traditional and specialty benefit programs. We have rated Medco buy since December 2008.

The company's fiscal first quarter revenue ascended 14% year over year to $14.8 billion, which beat the industry average growth rate of 1.1%. Net income increased 8% to $291 million as EPS improved 16% to 58 cents. Net operating cash flow increased 607%, and the company has added $1.25 billion to the cash balance since the prior year's first quarter.

Management reaffirmed its full-year guidance of GAAP diluted EPS of $2.45 to $2.55. Shares of Medco have ascended 9% in 2009, outperforming the Dow and S&P 500. The stock is currently trading at a price to earnings ratio around 21, indicating a premium to the market.

Colgate-Palmolive ( CL) manufactures and markets consumer products worldwide. We have rated Colgate-Palmolive buy since January 2005.

Fiscal first quarter revenue decreased 6% year over year to $3.5 billion but net income climbed 9% to $508 million as EPS jumped 13% to 97 cents. The company has established a five quarter streak of year-over-year EPS growth despite recessionary pressures. Gross margin increased during the quarter and is high at 59.80%. Net operating cash flow ascended 21% as the cash balance improved 9% to $702 million.

Colgate-Palmolive expects to continue organic sales growth for the rest of fiscal 2009. Its stock has climbed 3% year-to-date, indicating modest outperformance relative to the Dow and S&P 500. However, shares currently trade at a price to earnings ratio of 19, which is higher than the S&P 500 average of 15.

Enterprise Products Partners ( EPD) is a midstream energy company that provides services to producers and consumers of natural gas, NGLs, crude oil and petrochemicals in the US, Canada and Gulf of Mexico. We upgraded Enterprise Products to buy in April.

Enterprise continues to deal with the effects of Hurricanes Gustav and Ike, but posted a record gross margin in the first quarter. NGL, crude oil and petrochemical transportation volumes increased to a record 2.2 million barrels per day and net profit margin remained strong near 7%. Revenue fell considerably during the quarter, dropping 40% year over year to $3.42 billion as net income fell 13% to $225 million and EPS dropped 20% to 41 cents. The company's financial position is troubling. The balance sheet houses just $286 million of cash, compared to $9.3 billion of debt.

Despite these negatives, shares of Enterprise Products have climbed 19% year-to-date, outperforming all major indexes. The company offers an attractive play on a natural gas rebound. At its current price, the stock offers a cash distribution yield of 8.75%. Cash distributions are taxed differently than dividends.

FPL Group ( FPL) owns and operates Florida Power & Light Company, supplying electric service to more than eight million people on the east and lower west coasts of Florida. We have rated FPL buy since January 2009.

Fiscal first-quarter revenue increased 8% year over year to $3.71 billion as net income climbed 46% to $364 million and EPS improved 45% to 90 cents. The company's financial position is a cause for concern. The debt-to-equity ratio stands at 1.42, indicating excessive leverage, and the cash balance has dropped 54% since the prior year's first quarter to $276 million.

Based on first quarter results, FPL Group raised its guidance for fiscal 2009 and fiscal 2010. The company projects adjusted full year EPS between $4.20 and $4.40 and 2010 EPS between $4.65 and $5.05. Shares of FPL Group have ascended 12% in 2009, outperforming the Dow and S&P 500. Still, the stock trades at a price to earnings ratio around 13, indicating a discount to the market.

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A rating can be viewed for any stock through our screener stock rating screener. Each rating is derived from a variety of fundamental and pricing figures and represents our opinion of risk-adjusted performance relative to a 5,000+ stock coverage universe. However, the rating does not incorporate all factors that can alter a stock's performance, such as corporate or industry events, technology innovations and shifts in competitive dynamics.

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