Buy-Rated Dividend Stocks: Top 4 Companies: SLRC, AI, QRE, ARI

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."

Solar Capital

Dividend Yield: 7.10%

Solar Capital (NASDAQ: SLRC) shares currently have a dividend yield of 7.10%.

Solar Capital Ltd. is a business development company specializing in investments in leveraged middle market companies. The company has a P/E ratio of 13.88.

The average volume for Solar Capital has been 213,200 shares per day over the past 30 days. Solar Capital has a market cap of $1.0 billion and is part of the financial services industry. Shares are down 1.7% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Solar Capital as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, reasonable valuation levels, expanding profit margins and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 15.0%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 5.8%. 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.
  • The gross profit margin for SOLAR CAPITAL LTD is rather high; currently it is at 66.03%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 24.58% is above that of the industry average.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 728.42% to $260.79 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, SOLAR CAPITAL LTD has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of 258.00%.
  • SOLAR CAPITAL LTD has experienced a steep decline in earnings per share in the most recent quarter in comparison to its performance from the same quarter a year ago. This company has reported somewhat volatile earnings recently. We feel it is likely to report a decline in earnings in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, SOLAR CAPITAL LTD increased its bottom line by earning $3.12 versus $1.69 in the prior year. For the next year, the market is expecting a contraction of 39.4% in earnings ($1.89 versus $3.12).

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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