Don't Miss Out: Top 4 Yielding Hold-Rated Stocks: SPH, NKA, QCCO, RAS

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

Suburban Propane Partners

Dividend Yield: 7.70%

Suburban Propane Partners (NYSE: SPH) shares currently have a dividend yield of 7.70%.

Suburban Propane Partners, L.P., through its subsidiaries, engages in the retail marketing and distribution of propane, fuel oil, and refined fuels. The company has a P/E ratio of 62.45.

The average volume for Suburban Propane Partners has been 203,400 shares per day over the past 30 days. Suburban Propane Partners has a market cap of $2.7 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are up 17.3% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Suburban Propane Partners as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, good cash flow from operations and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including unimpressive growth in net income, disappointing return on equity and poor profit margins.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • SPH's very impressive revenue growth greatly exceeded the industry average of 21.1%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues leaped by 61.9%. 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 increased to $66.51 million or 18.33% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, SUBURBAN PROPANE PRTNRS -LP has also modestly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of 13.59%.
  • Even though the current debt-to-equity ratio is 1.14, it is still below the industry average, suggesting that this level of debt is acceptable within the Gas Utilities industry. Despite the fact that SPH's debt-to-equity ratio is mixed in its results, the company's quick ratio of 2.15 is high and demonstrates strong liquidity.
  • Current return on equity is lower than its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a clear sign of weakness within the company. When compared to other companies in the Gas Utilities industry and the overall market, SUBURBAN PROPANE PRTNRS -LP's return on equity is below that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • The gross profit margin for SUBURBAN PROPANE PRTNRS -LP is currently extremely low, coming in at 8.36%. It has decreased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of -15.53% is significantly below that of the industry average.

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

Niska Gas Storage Partners

Dividend Yield: 9.80%

Niska Gas Storage Partners (NYSE: NKA) shares currently have a dividend yield of 9.80%.

Niska Gas Storage Partners LLC owns and operates natural gas storage assets in North America. The company has a P/E ratio of 101.79.

The average volume for Niska Gas Storage Partners has been 78,900 shares per day over the past 30 days. Niska Gas Storage Partners has a market cap of $491.5 million and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are up 33.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Niska Gas Storage Partners as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth and compelling growth in net income. However, as a counter to these strengths, we find that the company has favored debt over equity in the management of its balance sheet.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • NKA's very impressive revenue growth greatly exceeded the industry average of 10.3%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues leaped by 193.4%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • NISKA GAS STORAGE PARTNERS 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. This trend suggests that the performance of the business is improving. During the past fiscal year, NISKA GAS STORAGE PARTNERS continued to lose money by earning -$0.63 versus -$2.38 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.00 versus -$0.63).
  • Compared to where it was a year ago today, the stock is now trading at a higher level, reflecting both the market's overall trend during that period and the fact that the company's earnings growth has been robust. We feel that the combination of its price rise over the last year and its current price-to-earnings ratio relative to its industry tend to reduce its upside potential.
  • The company's current return on equity greatly increased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of significant strength within the corporation. Compared to other companies in the Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry and the overall market, NISKA GAS STORAGE PARTNERS's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio of 1.13 is relatively high when compared with the industry average, suggesting a need for better debt level management. To add to this, NKA has a quick ratio of 0.52, this demonstrates the lack of ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs.

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

QC Holdings

Dividend Yield: 8.10%

QC Holdings (NASDAQ: QCCO) shares currently have a dividend yield of 8.10%.

QC Holdings, Inc. and its subsidiaries provide various retail consumer financial products and services in the United States. The company offers payday loans, which provide cash to the customers in exchange for a promissory note with a maturity of two to three weeks. The company has a P/E ratio of 3.49.

The average volume for QC Holdings has been 11,100 shares per day over the past 30 days. QC Holdings has a market cap of $43.1 million and is part of the banking industry. Shares are down 21.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

TheStreet Ratings rates QC Holdings as a hold. Among the primary strengths of the company is its solid financial position based on a variety of debt and liquidity measures that we have evaluated. At the same time, however, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself, feeble growth in the company's earnings per share and deteriorating net income.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • QCCO's debt-to-equity ratio is very low at 0.28 and is currently below that of the industry average, implying that there has been very successful management of debt levels. To add to this, QCCO has a quick ratio of 2.13, which demonstrates the ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs.
  • QCCO, with its decline in revenue, slightly underperformed the industry average of 3.3%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 3.5%. The declining revenue appears to have seeped down to the company's 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. In comparison to the other companies in the Consumer Finance industry and the overall market, QC HOLDINGS INC's return on equity is significantly below that of the industry average and is below that of the S&P 500.
  • QC HOLDINGS INC 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 earnings per share over the past two years. During the past fiscal year, QC HOLDINGS INC reported lower earnings of $0.43 versus $0.66 in the prior year.
  • The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and the Consumer Finance industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 80.3% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $1.73 million to $0.34 million.

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

Rait Financial

Dividend Yield: 8.00%

Rait Financial (NYSE: RAS) shares currently have a dividend yield of 8.00%.

RAIT Financial Trust operates as a self-managed and self-advised real estate investment trust (REIT). The company, through its subsidiaries, invests in, manages, and services real estate-related assets with a focus on commercial real estate.

The average volume for Rait Financial has been 645,600 shares per day over the past 30 days. Rait Financial has a market cap of $454.5 million and is part of the real estate industry. Shares are up 13.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Rait Financial as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, good cash flow from operations and solid stock price performance. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity and poor profit margins.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • RAS's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 10.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 20.2%. 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 its closing price of one year ago, RAS's share price has jumped by 36.21%, exceeding the performance of the broader market during that same time frame. 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.
  • The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and the Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 1606.9% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from -$3.53 million to -$60.29 million.
  • Current return on equity is lower than its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a clear sign of weakness within the company. Compared to other companies in the Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) industry and the overall market, RAIT FINANCIAL TRUST's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.

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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