5 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 5 stocks with substantial yields, that ultimately, we have rated "Buy."

Medical Properties

Dividend Yield: 5.00%

Medical Properties (NYSE: MPW) shares currently have a dividend yield of 5.00%.

Medical Properties Trust, Inc. operates as a real estate investment trust (REIT) in the United States. It acquires, develops, and invests in healthcare facilities; and leases healthcare facilities to healthcare operating companies and healthcare providers. The company has a P/E ratio of 28.57.

The average volume for Medical Properties has been 2,167,800 shares per day over the past 30 days. Medical Properties has a market cap of $2.2 billion and is part of the real estate industry. Shares are up 33.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Medical Properties as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income 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:
  • MPW's very impressive revenue growth greatly exceeded the industry average of 16.5%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues leaped by 66.9%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 260.00% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 86.71% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. Turning to the future, naturally, any stock can fall in a major bear market. However, in almost any other environment, the stock should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed nice gains in the past year.
  • MEDICAL PROPERTIES TRUST 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 two years. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, MEDICAL PROPERTIES TRUST increased its bottom line by earning $0.57 versus $0.13 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($0.84 versus $0.57).
  • 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 125.0% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $12.69 million to $28.56 million.
  • The gross profit margin for MEDICAL PROPERTIES TRUST is rather high; currently it is at 69.40%. It has increased significantly from the same period last year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 51.22% significantly outperformed against the industry average.

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Duke Energy Corporation

Dividend Yield: 4.10%

Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE: DUK) shares currently have a dividend yield of 4.10%.

Duke Energy Corporation operates as an energy company in the United States and Latin America. The company operates in three segments: U.S. Franchised Electric and Gas, Commercial Power, and International Energy. The U.S. The company has a P/E ratio of 24.24.

The average volume for Duke Energy Corporation has been 2,872,400 shares per day over the past 30 days. Duke Energy Corporation has a market cap of $52.5 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are up 16.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Duke Energy Corporation as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, increase in net income, good cash flow from operations, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • DUK's very impressive revenue growth greatly exceeded the industry average of 13.2%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues leaped by 69.1%. 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 net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Electric Utilities industry. The net income increased by 51.0% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $288.00 million to $435.00 million.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 96.12% to $1,265.00 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, DUKE ENERGY CORP has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of 4.97%.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio is somewhat low, currently at 0.99, and is less than that of the industry average, implying that there has been a relatively successful effort in the management of debt levels. Even though the company has a strong debt-to-equity ratio, the quick ratio of 0.35 is very weak and demonstrates a lack of ability to pay short-term obligations.
  • DUKE ENERGY CORP's earnings per share declined by 13.6% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. The company has suffered a declining pattern of earnings per share over the past year. However, we anticipate this trend reversing over the coming year. During the past fiscal year, DUKE ENERGY CORP reported lower earnings of $3.06 versus $3.84 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($4.34 versus $3.06).

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.

Pitney Bowes

Dividend Yield: 10.20%

Pitney Bowes (NYSE: PBI) shares currently have a dividend yield of 10.20%.

Pitney Bowes Inc. provides software, hardware, and services to enable physical and digital communications in the United States and internationally. The company has a P/E ratio of 6.81.

The average volume for Pitney Bowes has been 3,695,100 shares per day over the past 30 days. Pitney Bowes has a market cap of $3.0 billion and is part of the consumer durables industry. Shares are up 38.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Pitney Bowes as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its notable return on equity, good cash flow from operations, expanding profit margins and growth in earnings per share. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • Compared to other companies in the Commercial Services & Supplies industry and the overall market, PITNEY BOWES INC's return on equity significantly exceeds that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • Net operating cash flow has increased to $220.56 million or 29.93% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, PITNEY BOWES INC has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of -20.77%.
  • The gross profit margin for PITNEY BOWES INC is rather high; currently it is at 56.10%. Regardless of PBI's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, PBI's net profit margin of 8.57% compares favorably to the industry average.
  • Regardless of the drop in revenue, the company managed to outperform against the industry average of 9.2%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 1.4%. The declining revenue has not hurt the company's bottom line, with increasing earnings per share.
  • PITNEY BOWES INC 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 two years. However, we anticipate underperformance relative to this pattern in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, PITNEY BOWES INC increased its bottom line by earning $2.18 versus $1.98 in the prior year. For the next year, the market is expecting a contraction of 11.9% in earnings ($1.92 versus $2.18).

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.

Blackstone Group

Dividend Yield: 5.90%

Blackstone Group (NYSE: BX) shares currently have a dividend yield of 5.90%.

The Blackstone Group L.P., together with its subsidiaries, provides alternative asset management and financial advisory services worldwide. It operates in five segments: Private Equity, Real Estate, Hedge Fund Solutions, Credit Businesses, and Financial Advisory. The company has a P/E ratio of 49.44.

The average volume for Blackstone Group has been 5,263,800 shares per day over the past 30 days. Blackstone Group has a market cap of $11.3 billion and is part of the financial services industry. Shares are up 32% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Blackstone Group as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, expanding profit margins, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income and solid stock price performance. 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:
  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 4.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 30.9%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • 35.20% is the gross profit margin for BLACKSTONE GROUP LP which we consider to be strong. It has increased significantly from the same period last year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 13.44% is above that of the industry average.
  • BLACKSTONE GROUP 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 two years. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, BLACKSTONE GROUP LP turned its bottom line around by earning $0.40 versus -$0.33 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($2.26 versus $0.40).
  • 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 187.4% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $58.33 million to $167.64 million.
  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 163.63% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 34.63% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. Looking ahead, the stock's sharp rise over the last year has already helped drive it to a level which is relatively expensive compared to the rest of its industry. We feel, however, that other strengths this company displays justify these higher price levels.

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.

Genesis Energy

Dividend Yield: 4.10%

Genesis Energy (NYSE: GEL) shares currently have a dividend yield of 4.10%.

Genesis Energy, L.P. operates in the midstream segment of the oil and gas industry in the Gulf Coast region of the United States. It operates through three segments: Pipeline Transportation, Refinery Services, and Supply and Logistics. The company has a P/E ratio of 39.01.

The average volume for Genesis Energy has been 297,500 shares per day over the past 30 days. Genesis Energy has a market cap of $3.9 billion and is part of the energy industry. Shares are up 36.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Genesis Energy 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 solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The revenue growth greatly exceeded the industry average of 1.3%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 30.6%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • GENESIS ENERGY -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 two years. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, GENESIS ENERGY -LP increased its bottom line by earning $1.23 versus $0.75 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.57 versus $1.23).
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry. The net income increased by 246.5% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $7.77 million to $26.94 million.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 141.98% to $46.37 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, GENESIS ENERGY -LP has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of 26.66%.
  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 240.00% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 49.11% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. We feel that the stock's sharp appreciation over the last year has driven it to a price level which is now somewhat expensive compared to the rest of its industry. The other strengths this company shows, however, justify the higher price levels.

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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