What To Hold: 3 Hold-Rated Dividend Stocks SPH, FULL, EDUC

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 "Hold."

Suburban Propane Partners

Dividend Yield: 8.10%

Suburban Propane Partners (NYSE: SPH) shares currently have a dividend yield of 8.10%.

Suburban Propane Partners, L.P., through its subsidiaries, is engaged in the retail marketing and distribution of propane, fuel oil, and refined fuels. The company has a P/E ratio of 33.09.

The average volume for Suburban Propane Partners has been 175,400 shares per day over the past 30 days. Suburban Propane Partners has a market cap of $2.6 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are down 6.8% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Suburban Propane Partners as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and notable return on equity. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including weak operating cash flow, poor profit margins and relatively poor performance when compared with the S&P 500 during the past year.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • Despite its growing revenue, the company underperformed as compared with the industry average of 17.1%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 7.2%. 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.
  • SUBURBAN PROPANE PRTNRS -LP' earnings per share from the most recent quarter came in slightly below the year earlier quarter. 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, SUBURBAN PROPANE PRTNRS -LP increased its bottom line by earning $1.45 versus $0.48 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.83 versus $1.45).
  • Even though the current debt-to-equity ratio is 1.09, it is still below the industry average, suggesting that this level of debt is acceptable within the Gas Utilities industry. Regardless of the somewhat mixed results with the debt-to-equity ratio, the company's quick ratio of 0.92 is weak.
  • The gross profit margin for SUBURBAN PROPANE PRTNRS -LP is currently lower than what is desirable, coming in at 25.36%. It has decreased from the same quarter the previous year. Regardless of the weak results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of 11.15% is above that of the industry average.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly decreased to $4.16 million or 93.23% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.

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

Full Circle Capital

Dividend Yield: 10.30%

Full Circle Capital (NASDAQ: FULL) shares currently have a dividend yield of 10.30%.

Full Circle Capital Corporation is a business development company and operates as an externally managed non-diversified closed-end management investment company. The company has a P/E ratio of 783.00.

The average volume for Full Circle Capital has been 176,700 shares per day over the past 30 days. Full Circle Capital has a market cap of $74.1 million and is part of the financial services industry. Shares are up 11.2% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Full Circle Capital as a hold. Among the primary strengths of the company is its generally strong cash flow from operations. At the same time, however, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 1117.59% to $18.28 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, FULL CIRCLE CAPITAL CORP has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of -112.87%.
  • FULL CIRCLE CAPITAL CORP 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. But, we feel it is poised for EPS growth in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, FULL CIRCLE CAPITAL CORP increased its bottom line by earning $0.52 versus $0.44 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($0.73 versus $0.52).
  • FULL, with its decline in revenue, underperformed when compared the industry average of 16.9%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues fell by 27.1%. The declining revenue appears to have seeped down to the company's bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
  • The company's current return on equity has slightly decreased from the same quarter one year prior. This implies a minor weakness in the organization. Compared to other companies in the Capital Markets industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, FULL CIRCLE CAPITAL CORP underperformed against that of the industry average and is significantly less than that of the S&P 500.
  • 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 Capital Markets industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 185.0% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from -$0.43 million to -$1.22 million.

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

Educational Development Corporation

Dividend Yield: 8.60%

Educational Development Corporation (NASDAQ: EDUC) shares currently have a dividend yield of 8.60%.

Educational Development Corporation operates as a trade publisher of the line of children's books in the United States. The company has a P/E ratio of 33.64.

The average volume for Educational Development Corporation has been 7,300 shares per day over the past 30 days. Educational Development Corporation has a market cap of $14.7 million and is part of the media industry. Shares are up 20.5% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Educational Development Corporation as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, expanding profit margins and good cash flow from operations. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself and disappointing return on equity.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • Despite its growing revenue, the company underperformed as compared with the industry average of 10.5%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 8.1%. This growth in revenue appears to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, improving the earnings per share.
  • The gross profit margin for EDUCATIONAL DEVELOPMENT CORP is rather high; currently it is at 61.24%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 6.44% is above that of the industry average.
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has exceeded that of the Distributors industry average, but is less than that of the S&P 500. The net income increased by 4.2% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from $0.53 million to $0.55 million.
  • In its most recent trading session, EDUC has closed at a price level that was not very different from its closing price of one year earlier. This is probably due to its weak earnings growth as well as other mixed factors. Looking ahead, other than the push or pull of the broad market, we do not see anything in the company's numbers that may help reverse the decline experienced over the past 12 months. Despite the past decline, the stock is still selling for more than most others in its industry.
  • 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 Distributors industry and the overall market, EDUCATIONAL DEVELOPMENT CORP'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.

Other helpful dividend tools from TheStreet:

null

More from Markets

Zoom CEO Eric Yuan Leads Glassdoor's List of Top 100 CEOs

Zoom CEO Eric Yuan Leads Glassdoor's List of Top 100 CEOs

REPLAY: Jim Cramer on Fed Rate Hikes, Oil Prices and Starbucks Worries

REPLAY: Jim Cramer on Fed Rate Hikes, Oil Prices and Starbucks Worries

3 Must Reads on the Market From TheStreet's Top Columnists

3 Must Reads on the Market From TheStreet's Top Columnists

Purdue Pharma Unloads Sales Staff, Transitioning From Painkiller Focus

Purdue Pharma Unloads Sales Staff, Transitioning From Painkiller Focus

Dow Finishes Lower as Nasdaq Posts New Record

Dow Finishes Lower as Nasdaq Posts New Record