3 Buy-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 "Buy."

BlackRock Kelso Capital Corporation

Dividend Yield: 10.40%

BlackRock Kelso Capital Corporation (NASDAQ: BKCC) shares currently have a dividend yield of 10.40%.

BlackRock Kelso Capital Corporation is a private equity firm specializing in investments in middle market companies. The firm invests in all industries. The company has a P/E ratio of 12.82. Currently there is 1 analyst that rates BlackRock Kelso Capital Corporation a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 3 rate it a hold.

The average volume for BlackRock Kelso Capital Corporation has been 685,600 shares per day over the past 30 days. BlackRock Kelso Capital Corporation has a market cap of $739.6 million and is part of the financial services industry. Shares are down 1.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday.

TheStreet Ratings rates BlackRock Kelso Capital Corporation as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, good cash flow from operations and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • Despite its growing revenue, the company underperformed as compared with the industry average of 11.3%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 5.3%. 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.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 304.29% to $61.76 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, BLACKROCK KELSO CAPITAL CORP has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of -78.27%.
  • 36.00% is the gross profit margin for BLACKROCK KELSO CAPITAL CORP which we consider to be strong. Despite the high profit margin, it has decreased significantly from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, BKCC's net profit margin of 4.59% is significantly lower than the industry average.
  • BLACKROCK KELSO CAPITAL CORP has exprienced 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 suffered a declining pattern of earnings per share over the past two years. However, we anticipate this trend to reverse over the coming year. During the past fiscal year, BLACKROCK KELSO CAPITAL CORP reported lower earnings of $0.78 versus $1.06 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($0.96 versus $0.78).
  • In its most recent trading session, BKCC has closed at a price level that was not very different from its closing price of one year earlier. This is probably due to its weak earnings growth as well as other mixed factors. Looking ahead, although the push and pull of the overall market trend could certainly make a critical difference, we do not see any strong reason stemming from the company's fundamentals that would cause a continuation of last year's decline. In fact, the stock is now selling for less than others in its industry in relation to its current earnings.

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AllianceBernstein Holding L.P

Dividend Yield: 7.30%

AllianceBernstein Holding L.P (NYSE: AB) shares currently have a dividend yield of 7.30%.

AllianceBernstein Holding L.P. provides investment management and related services in the United States and internationally. The company has a P/E ratio of 42.94. Currently there are 3 analysts that rate AllianceBernstein Holding L.P a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

The average volume for AllianceBernstein Holding L.P has been 399,700 shares per day over the past 30 days. AllianceBernstein Holding L.P has a market cap of $2.3 billion and is part of the financial services industry. Shares are up 25.5% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday.

TheStreet Ratings rates AllianceBernstein Holding L.P as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, good cash flow from operations and expanding profit margins. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • AB's very impressive revenue growth greatly exceeded the industry average of 11.3%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues leaped by 113.9%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • ALLIANCEBERNSTEIN HOLDING 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. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, ALLIANCEBERNSTEIN HOLDING LP turned its bottom line around by earning $0.50 versus -$0.95 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.51 versus $0.50).
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Capital Markets industry. The net income increased by 113.1% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from -$199.46 million to $26.19 million.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 51.57% to $37.86 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, ALLIANCEBERNSTEIN HOLDING LP has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of -78.27%.
  • The gross profit margin for ALLIANCEBERNSTEIN HOLDING LP is currently very high, coming in at 100.00%. AB has managed to maintain the strong profit margin since the same quarter of last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, AB's net profit margin of 97.38% significantly outperformed against the industry.

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Compass Diversified Holdings Shares of Bene

Dividend Yield: 9.10%

Compass Diversified Holdings Shares of Bene (NYSE: CODI) shares currently have a dividend yield of 9.10%.

Compass Diversified Holdings is a public investment firm specializing in acquiring controlling stakes in small to middle market companies. The firm seeks to make middle market and buyout investments. Currently there are 3 analysts that rate Compass Diversified Holdings Shares of Bene a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

The average volume for Compass Diversified Holdings Shares of Bene has been 162,300 shares per day over the past 30 days. Compass Diversified Holdings Shares of Bene has a market cap of $766.5 million and is part of the diversified services industry. Shares are up 7.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Compass Diversified Holdings Shares of Bene as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, impressive record of earnings per share growth, increase in stock price during the past year and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 7.0%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 36.2%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio is somewhat low, currently at 0.65, and is less than that of the industry average, implying that there has been a relatively successful effort in the management of debt levels. Along with the favorable debt-to-equity ratio, the company maintains an adequate quick ratio of 1.04, which illustrates the ability to avoid short-term cash problems.
  • COMPASS DIVERSIFIED HOLDINGS 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. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, COMPASS DIVERSIFIED HOLDINGS continued to lose money by earning -$0.05 versus -$0.81 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.66 versus -$0.05).
  • Compared to where it was 12 months ago, the stock is up, but it has so far lagged the appreciation in the S&P 500. Turning our attention to the future direction of the stock, it goes without saying that even the best stocks can fall in an overall down market. However, in any other environment, this stock still has good upside potential despite the fact that it has already risen in the past year.
  • 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 Diversified Financial Services industry and the overall market, COMPASS DIVERSIFIED HOLDINGS's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.

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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