2 Ex-Dividend Stocks With Buy Ratings

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The following stocks go ex-dividend Tuesday, meaning an investor must purchase the shares Monday to qualify for the next dividend payment: Aetna ( AET) and Potash ( POT).

Both stocks were rated buy at TheStreet Ratings.

Aetna

The health care benefits company is scheduled to report its first-quarter earnings on April 26. Analysts, on average, anticipate earnings of $1.39 a share on revenue of $8.69 billion.

"For Aetna, our downgrade primarily reflects its more limited growth prospects in the commercial health plan business," Goldman Sachs analysts wrote in a March 22 report. "Since adding Aetna to the Americas Buy List on February 7, 2011, the stock is up 26% (vs. S&P 500 +6%)."

Forward Annual Dividend Yield: 1.4%

Rated "A+ (Buy)" by TheStreet Ratings: The company's fourth-quarter gross profit margin increased from the previous year.

Aetna has weak liquidity. Its Quick Ratio is 0.55, which demonstrates a lack of ability to meet its short-term cash needs.

In the fourth quarter, stockholders' net worth increased 2.31% from the prior year.

TheStreet Ratings' price target is $65.05. The stock closed Thursday (the stock market was closed Friday) at $49.62 and has risen 17.61% year to date.

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Potash

"Potash Corp.'s mine shutdowns are expected to impact production by 1.6-1.7Mt versus typical run-rates of 3Mt. Potash demand was absent for the majority of Q1, with minimal quantities of potash shipped to India, SE Asia, and Brazil, while the North American market remained quiet until the last few weeks of the quarter," CIBC analysts wrote in a report Monday.

Forward Annual Dividend Yield: 1.2%

Rated "B (Buy)" by TheStreet Ratings: The company's fourth-quarter gross profit margin increased from the previous year.

Potash has weak liquidity. Its Quick Ratio is 0.74, which demonstrates a lack of ability to meet its short-term cash needs.

In the fourth quarter, stockholders' net worth increased 15.32% from the prior year.

TheStreet Ratings' price target is $51.99. The stock closed Thursday at $45.13 and has risen 9.33% year to date.

-- Written by Alexandra Zendrian

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