4 Buy-Rated Dividend Stocks To Check Out: MO, MIC, VTR, PCG

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 "Buy."

Altria Group

Dividend Yield: 5.60%

Altria Group (NYSE: MO) shares currently have a dividend yield of 5.60%.

Altria Group, Inc., through its subsidiaries, engages in the manufacture and sale of cigarettes, smokeless products, and wine in the United States and internationally. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.77.

The average volume for Altria Group has been 9,211,600 shares per day over the past 30 days. Altria Group has a market cap of $69.2 billion and is part of the tobacco industry. Shares are up 9.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Altria Group as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its growth in earnings per share, notable return on equity, expanding profit margins, good cash flow from operations and increase in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • ALTRIA GROUP INC has improved earnings per share by 5.0% 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, ALTRIA GROUP INC increased its bottom line by earning $2.06 versus $1.64 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($2.39 versus $2.06).
  • 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 Tobacco industry and the overall market, ALTRIA GROUP INC's return on equity significantly exceeds that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • The gross profit margin for ALTRIA GROUP INC is rather high; currently it is at 57.47%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 27.97% is above that of the industry average.
  • Net operating cash flow has increased to -$1,223.00 million or 36.36% when compared to the same quarter last year. The firm also exceeded the industry average cash flow growth rate of -8.53%.
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has exceeded that of the Tobacco industry average, but is less than that of the S&P 500. The net income increased by 3.3% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from $1,225.00 million to $1,266.00 million.

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

Macquarie Infrastructure Company

Dividend Yield: 6.60%

Macquarie Infrastructure Company (NYSE: MIC) shares currently have a dividend yield of 6.60%.

Macquarie Infrastructure Company LLC, through its subsidiaries, owns, operates, and invests in a diversified group of infrastructure businesses in the United States.

The average volume for Macquarie Infrastructure Company has been 227,800 shares per day over the past 30 days. Macquarie Infrastructure Company has a market cap of $2.8 billion and is part of the wholesale industry. Shares are up 16.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Macquarie Infrastructure Company as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, expanding profit margins and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. 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 its closing price of one year ago, MIC's share price has jumped by 25.23%, exceeding the performance of the broader market during that same time frame. 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.
  • 40.84% is the gross profit margin for MACQUARIE INFRASTRUCT CO LLC which we consider to be strong. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Regardless of the strong results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of -0.33% is in-line with the industry average.
  • MACQUARIE INFRASTRUCT CO LLC 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 year. However, we anticipate this trend reversing over the coming year. During the past fiscal year, MACQUARIE INFRASTRUCT CO LLC reported lower earnings of $0.29 versus $0.59 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.37 versus $0.29).
  • MIC, with its decline in revenue, slightly underperformed the industry average of 5.7%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 2.3%. Weakness in the company's revenue seems to have hurt the bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
  • MIC's debt-to-equity ratio of 0.98 is somewhat low overall, but it is high when compared to the industry average, implying that the management of the debt levels should be evaluated further. Regardless of the somewhat mixed results with the debt-to-equity ratio, the company's quick ratio of 1.39 is sturdy.

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

Ventas

Dividend Yield: 4.40%

Ventas (NYSE: VTR) shares currently have a dividend yield of 4.40%.

Ventas, Inc. is a publicly owned real estate investment trust. The firm engages in investment, management, financing, and leasing of properties in the healthcare industry. It invests in the real estate markets of the United States and Canada. The company has a P/E ratio of 38.18.

The average volume for Ventas has been 1,694,800 shares per day over the past 30 days. Ventas has a market cap of $17.8 billion and is part of the real estate industry. Shares are down 6.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Ventas as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, increase in net income, reasonable valuation levels, good cash flow from operations and impressive record of earnings per share growth. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • VTR's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 10.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 11.9%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has greatly exceeded that of the S&P 500, but is less than that of the Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) industry average. The net income increased by 54.8% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $74.03 million to $114.58 million.
  • Net operating cash flow has increased to $277.38 million or 28.50% when compared to the same quarter last year. The firm also exceeded the industry average cash flow growth rate of 5.35%.
  • VENTAS INC reported significant earnings per share improvement in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. This company has reported somewhat volatile earnings recently. But, we feel it is poised for EPS growth in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, VENTAS INC reported lower earnings of $1.04 versus $1.41 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.60 versus $1.04).

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

PG&E

Dividend Yield: 4.50%

PG&E (NYSE: PCG) shares currently have a dividend yield of 4.50%.

PG&E Corporation, through its subsidiary, Pacific Gas and Electric Company, operates as a public utility company in northern and central California. The company has a P/E ratio of 19.41.

The average volume for PG&E has been 2,809,200 shares per day over the past 30 days. PG&E has a market cap of $18.1 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are up 1.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

TheStreet Ratings rates PG&E as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, compelling growth in net income, reasonable valuation levels, impressive record of earnings per share growth and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • PCG's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 2.6%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 5.1%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the 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 Multi-Utilities industry. The net income increased by 38.9% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $239.00 million to $332.00 million.
  • The return on equity has improved slightly when compared to the same quarter one year prior. This can be construed as a modest strength in the organization. Compared to other companies in the Multi-Utilities industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, PG&E CORP has outperformed in comparison with the industry average, but has underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500.
  • PG&E CORP has improved earnings per share by 34.5% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. This company has reported somewhat volatile earnings recently. But, we feel it is poised for EPS growth in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, PG&E CORP reported lower earnings of $1.91 versus $2.10 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($2.65 versus $1.91).

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

Other helpful dividend tools from TheStreet:

null

More from Markets

Trump, Trade Wars, General Electric, 'Jurassic World' - 5 Things You Must Know

Trump, Trade Wars, General Electric, 'Jurassic World' - 5 Things You Must Know

Boeing Slides as China Premier Li Says Willing to Continue Talks With Airbus

Boeing Slides as China Premier Li Says Willing to Continue Talks With Airbus

US Auto Tariffs Would Hit Global Industry Ratings; Ford & GM Vulnerable- Moody's

US Auto Tariffs Would Hit Global Industry Ratings; Ford & GM Vulnerable- Moody's

Futures Fall on Further Trade News and 4 Other Stories to Watch Monday Morning

Futures Fall on Further Trade News and 4 Other Stories to Watch Monday Morning

Stocks Weaken Around The World as Trump Opens New Fronts in Global Trade War

Stocks Weaken Around The World as Trump Opens New Fronts in Global Trade War