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

Icahn

Dividend Yield: 7.10%

Icahn (NASDAQ: IEP) shares currently have a dividend yield of 7.10%.

Icahn Enterprises L.P. engages in the investment, automotive, gaming, railcar, food packaging, metals, real estate, and home fashion businesses in the United States and internationally. Its Investment segment provides investment advisory, and administrative and back office services. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.08.

The average volume for Icahn has been 127,600 shares per day over the past 30 days. Icahn has a market cap of $6.1 billion and is part of the real estate industry. Shares are up 26.5% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Icahn as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, attractive valuation levels and solid stock price performance. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including generally higher debt management risk, weak operating cash flow and disappointing return on equity.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • IEP's very impressive revenue growth greatly exceeded the industry average of 0.7%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues leaped by 89.5%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 273.79% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 33.62% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. Regarding the stock's future course, our hold rating indicates that we do not recommend additional investment in this stock despite its gains in the past year.
  • ICAHN ENTERPRISES LP reported significant earnings per share improvement in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. The company has demonstrated a pattern of positive earnings per share growth over the past year. During the past fiscal year, ICAHN ENTERPRISES LP increased its bottom line by earning $8.07 versus $2.14 in the prior year.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly decreased to -$39.00 million or 108.12% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.
  • Currently the debt-to-equity ratio of 1.83 is quite high overall and when compared to the industry average, suggesting that the current management of debt levels should be re-evaluated.

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NutriSystem

Dividend Yield: 8.20%

NutriSystem (NASDAQ: NTRI) shares currently have a dividend yield of 8.20%.

Nutrisystem, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, provides weight management products and services in the United States. The company offers nutritionally balanced weight loss programs designed for women, men, and seniors. Currently there is 1 analyst that rates NutriSystem a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 1 rates it a hold.

The average volume for NutriSystem has been 329,600 shares per day over the past 30 days. NutriSystem has a market cap of $245.2 million and is part of the diversified services industry. Shares are up 4.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates NutriSystem as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its expanding profit margins and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity and weak operating cash flow.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • 48.30% is the gross profit margin for NUTRISYSTEM INC which we consider to be strong. 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 -8.04% trails the industry average.
  • NTRI has no debt to speak of therefore resulting in a debt-to-equity ratio of zero, which we consider to be a relatively favorable sign. Although the company had a strong debt-to-equity ratio, its quick ratio of 0.80 is somewhat weak and could be cause for future problems.
  • The revenue fell significantly faster than the industry average of 25.3%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 6.5%. Weakness in the company's revenue seems to have hurt the bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
  • Return on equity has greatly decreased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of major weakness within the corporation. Compared to other companies in the Internet & Catalog Retail industry and the overall market, NUTRISYSTEM INC's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly decreased to -$12.38 million or 73.21% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.

New From TheStreet: Jim Cramer's Protégé, Dave Peltier, only buys dividend stocks that have the potential for a 3% to 4% yield and 10% growth. Get his best picks for less than $50/year.

UMH Properties

Dividend Yield: 7.10%

UMH Properties (NYSE: UMH) shares currently have a dividend yield of 7.10%.

UMH Properties, Inc. (UMH) is a real estate investment trust. The firm engages in the ownership and operation of manufactured home communities. It leases manufactured home spaces to private manufactured home owners, as well as leases homes to residents. The company has a P/E ratio of 25.50. Currently there is 1 analyst that rates UMH Properties a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

The average volume for UMH Properties has been 37,100 shares per day over the past 30 days. UMH Properties has a market cap of $178.8 million and is part of the real estate industry. Shares are down 0.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates UMH Properties as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its compelling growth in net income, revenue growth and reasonable valuation levels. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including disappointing return on equity, poor profit margins and relatively poor performance when compared with the S&P 500 during the past year.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) industry. The net income increased by 139.8% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $0.54 million to $1.30 million.
  • Despite its growing revenue, the company underperformed as compared with the industry average of 16.4%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 12.7%. 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 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 Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, UMH PROPERTIES INC underperformed against that of the industry average and is significantly less than that of the S&P 500.
  • The gross profit margin for UMH PROPERTIES INC is rather low; currently it is at 19.60%. It has decreased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 8.89% significantly trails the industry average.

New From TheStreet: Jim Cramer's Protégé, Dave Peltier, only buys dividend stocks that have the potential for a 3% to 4% yield and 10% growth. Get his best picks for less than $50/year.

Other helpful dividend tools from TheStreet:

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.

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