Best 3 Yielding Buy-Rated Stocks: NYCB, VZ, MO

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 which could 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."

New York Community Bancorp

Dividend Yield: 6.20%

New York Community Bancorp (NYSE: NYCB) shares currently have a dividend yield of 6.20%.

New York Community Bancorp, Inc. operates as a multi-bank holding company for New York Community Bank and New York Commercial Bank that offer banking products and financial services in New York, New Jersey, Florida, Ohio, and Arizona. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.07.

The average volume for New York Community Bancorp has been 2,674,600 shares per day over the past 30 days. New York Community Bancorp has a market cap of $7.2 billion and is part of the banking industry. Shares are down 3.6% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

TheStreet Ratings rates New York Community Bancorp as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its reasonable valuation levels, expanding profit margins, good cash flow from operations and solid stock price performance. 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 gross profit margin for NEW YORK CMNTY BANCORP INC is currently very high, coming in at 72.14%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 25.57% is above that of the industry average.
  • Net operating cash flow has increased to $47.30 million or 23.78% when compared to the same quarter last year. Despite an increase in cash flow of 23.78%, NEW YORK CMNTY BANCORP INC is still growing at a significantly lower rate than the industry average of 88.32%.
  • Compared to where it was a year ago today, the stock is now trading at a higher level, regardless of the company's weak earnings results. Turning our attention to the future direction of the stock, it goes without saying that even the best stocks can fall in an overall down market. However, in any other environment, this stock still has good upside potential despite the fact that it has already risen in the past year.
  • The revenue fell significantly faster than the industry average of 26.6%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 6.9%. The declining revenue appears to have seeped down to the company's bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.

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

Verizon Communications

Dividend Yield: 4.50%

Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ) shares currently have a dividend yield of 4.50%.

Verizon Communications Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides communications, information and entertainment products and services to consumers, businesses, and governmental agencies worldwide. The company has a P/E ratio of 11.68.

The average volume for Verizon Communications has been 43,577,200 shares per day over the past 30 days. Verizon Communications has a market cap of $197.1 billion and is part of the telecommunications industry. Shares are down 3.1% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Verizon Communications as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, notable return on equity, expanding profit margins, good cash flow from operations and impressive record of earnings per share growth. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • VZ's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 1.0%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 3.4%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • 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 Diversified Telecommunication Services industry and the overall market, VERIZON COMMUNICATIONS INC's return on equity significantly exceeds that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • The gross profit margin for VERIZON COMMUNICATIONS INC is rather high; currently it is at 61.49%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 16.31% is above that of the industry average.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 55.03% to $10,431.00 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, VERIZON COMMUNICATIONS INC has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of 4.30%.
  • VERIZON COMMUNICATIONS INC 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 two years. However, we anticipate underperformance relative to this pattern in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, VERIZON COMMUNICATIONS INC increased its bottom line by earning $4.00 versus $0.31 in the prior year. For the next year, the market is expecting a contraction of 11.8% in earnings ($3.53 versus $4.00).

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

Altria Group

Dividend Yield: 5.00%

Altria Group (NYSE: MO) shares currently have a dividend yield of 5.00%.

Altria Group, Inc., through its subsidiaries, manufactures and sells cigarettes, smokeless products, and wine in the United States and internationally. The company has a P/E ratio of 16.19.

The average volume for Altria Group has been 8,773,000 shares per day over the past 30 days. Altria Group has a market cap of $76.4 billion and is part of the tobacco industry. Shares are up 0.2% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Altria Group as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its expanding profit margins, notable return on equity and increase in stock price during the past year. 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 gross profit margin for ALTRIA GROUP INC is rather high; currently it is at 55.79%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Despite the strong results of the gross profit margin, MO's net profit margin of 11.08% significantly trails the industry average.
  • ALTRIA GROUP INC 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, ALTRIA GROUP INC increased its bottom line by earning $2.26 versus $2.06 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($2.57 versus $2.26).
  • MO, with its decline in revenue, slightly underperformed the industry average of 2.9%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 1.3%. Weakness in the company's revenue seems to have hurt the bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
  • Compared to where it was 12 months ago, the stock is up, but it has so far lagged the appreciation in the S&P 500. The stock's price rise over the last year has driven it to a level which is somewhat expensive compared to the rest of its industry. We feel, however, that other strengths this company displays justify these higher price levels.
  • 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. 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.

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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