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." Vanguard Natural Resources (NASDAQ: VNR) shares currently have a dividend yield of 8.50%. Vanguard Natural Resources, LLC, through its subsidiaries, engages in the acquisition and development of oil and natural gas properties in the United States. The average volume for Vanguard Natural Resources has been 428,400 shares per day over the past 30 days. Vanguard Natural Resources has a market cap of $2.0 billion and is part of the energy industry. Shares are up 14.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. TheStreet Ratings rates Vanguard Natural Resources as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, increase in stock price during the past year and expanding profit margins. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, generally higher debt management risk and disappointing return on equity. Highlights from the ratings report include:
- The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 8.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 18.8%. 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.
- 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. Despite the fact that it has already risen in the past year, there is currently no conclusive evidence that warrants the purchase or sale of this stock.
- The gross profit margin for VANGUARD NATURAL RESOURCES is rather high; currently it is at 50.30%. Regardless of VNR's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, VNR's net profit margin of -40.08% significantly underperformed when compared to the industry average.
- The debt-to-equity ratio of 1.02 is relatively high when compared with the industry average, suggesting a need for better debt level management. To add to this, VNR has a quick ratio of 0.67, this demonstrates the lack of ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs.
- 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 Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry and the overall market, VANGUARD NATURAL RESOURCES's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
- You can view the full Vanguard Natural Resources Ratings Report.