Best Of The Buy-Rated Dividend Stocks: Top 3 Companies: AB, NTLS, EXLP

Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer or Stephanie Link.

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."

AllianceBernstein Holding L.P

Dividend Yield: 8.30%

AllianceBernstein Holding L.P (NYSE: AB) shares currently have a dividend yield of 8.30%.

AllianceBernstein Holding L.P. provides investment management and related services in the United States and internationally. The company has a P/E ratio of 24.15.

The average volume for AllianceBernstein Holding L.P has been 411,600 shares per day over the past 30 days. AllianceBernstein Holding L.P has a market cap of $2.1 billion and is part of the financial services industry. Shares are up 13.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

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, solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income and good cash flow from operations. Although the company may harbor some minor weaknesses, we feel they are unlikely to have a significant impact on results.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • AB's very impressive revenue growth greatly exceeded the industry average of 12.5%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues leaped by 63.4%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 90.47% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 56.64% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. Regarding the stock's future course, although almost any stock can fall in a broad market decline, AB should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed a very nice gain in the past year.
  • 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 ($1.60 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 88.7% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $21.34 million to $40.28 million.
  • Net operating cash flow has increased to $40.28 million or 42.79% when compared to the same quarter last year. The firm also exceeded the industry average cash flow growth rate of 7.84%.

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

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