3 Hold-Rated Dividend Stocks: ATAX, CLUB, NRP

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 "Hold."

America First Multifamily Investors

Dividend Yield: 8.40%

America First Multifamily Investors (NASDAQ: ATAX) shares currently have a dividend yield of 8.40%.

America First Multifamily Investors, L.P. acquires, holds, sells, and deals in a portfolio of mortgage revenue bonds that have been issued to provide construction and/or permanent financing of multifamily residential apartments. The company has a P/E ratio of 22.04.

The average volume for America First Multifamily Investors has been 102,900 shares per day over the past 30 days. America First Multifamily Investors has a market cap of $358.5 million and is part of the real estate industry. Shares are down 5.4% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates America First Multifamily Investors as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, expanding profit margins and notable return on equity. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including unimpressive growth in net income, weak operating cash flow and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The revenue growth greatly exceeded the industry average of 35.6%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 2.0%. 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 AMERICA FIRST MULTIFAMILY-LP is currently very high, coming in at 84.09%. Regardless of ATAX's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, ATAX's net profit margin of 45.80% significantly outperformed against the industry.
  • AMERICA FIRST MULTIFAMILY-LP's earnings per share declined by 33.3% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. This company has not demonstrated a clear trend in earnings over the past 2 years, making it difficult to accurately predict earnings for the coming year. During the past fiscal year, AMERICA FIRST MULTIFAMILY-LP increased its bottom line by earning $0.34 versus $0.09 in the prior year.
  • Net operating cash flow has decreased to $1.89 million or 38.07% when compared to the same quarter last year. In conjunction, when comparing current results to the industry average, AMERICA FIRST MULTIFAMILY-LP has marginally lower results.
  • 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 Thrifts & Mortgage Finance industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 27.3% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $8.32 million to $6.05 million.

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

Town Sports International Holdings

Dividend Yield: 15.50%

Town Sports International Holdings (NASDAQ: CLUB) shares currently have a dividend yield of 15.50%.

Town Sports International Holdings, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, owns and operates fitness clubs in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States.

The average volume for Town Sports International Holdings has been 293,400 shares per day over the past 30 days. Town Sports International Holdings has a market cap of $100.5 million and is part of the leisure industry. Shares are down 72% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Town Sports International Holdings as a hold. The company's strongest point has been its strong cash flow from operations. At the same time, however, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, poor profit margins and feeble growth in the company's earnings per share.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • Regardless of the drop in revenue, the company managed to outperform against the industry average of 5.9%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 2.7%. Weakness in the company's revenue seems to have hurt the bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
  • Despite any intermediate fluctuations, we have only bad news to report on this stock's performance over the last year: it has tumbled by 63.55%, worse than the S&P 500's performance. Consistent with the plunge in the stock price, the company's earnings per share are down 183.33% compared to the year-earlier quarter. Naturally, the overall market trend is bound to be a significant factor. However, in one sense, the stock's sharp decline last year is a positive for future investors, making it cheaper (in proportion to its earnings over the past year) than most other stocks in its industry. But due to other concerns, we feel the stock is still not a good buy right now.
  • 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 Hotels, Restaurants & Leisure industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 183.1% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $4.23 million to -$3.52 million.
  • The gross profit margin for TOWN SPORTS INTL HOLDINGS is rather low; currently it is at 18.75%. It has decreased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of -3.03% 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.

Natural Resources Partners

Dividend Yield: 8.70%

Natural Resources Partners (NYSE: NRP) shares currently have a dividend yield of 8.70%.

Natural Resource Partners L.P., through its subsidiaries, owns, manages, and leases mineral properties in the United States. The company has a P/E ratio of 11.55.

The average volume for Natural Resources Partners has been 372,100 shares per day over the past 30 days. Natural Resources Partners has a market cap of $1.8 billion and is part of the metals & mining industry. Shares are down 18.9% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Natural Resources Partners as a hold. Among the primary strengths of the company is its expanding profit margins over time. At the same time, however, we also find weaknesses including feeble growth in the company's earnings per share, deteriorating net income and generally higher debt management risk.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The gross profit margin for NATURAL RESOURCE PARTNERS LP is currently very high, coming in at 89.56%. Regardless of NRP's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, NRP's net profit margin of 46.22% significantly outperformed against the industry.
  • NRP, with its decline in revenue, underperformed when compared the industry average of 1.5%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues fell by 19.2%. Weakness in the company's revenue seems to have hurt the bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
  • The share price of NATURAL RESOURCE PARTNERS LP has not done very well: it is down 23.49% and has underperformed the S&P 500, in part reflecting the company's sharply declining earnings per share when compared to the year-earlier quarter. The fact that the stock is now selling for less than others in its industry in relation to its current earnings is not reason enough to justify a buy rating at this time.
  • The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed against the S&P 500 and did not exceed that of the Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 31.9% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $47.91 million to $32.61 million.
  • Currently the debt-to-equity ratio of 1.83 is quite high overall and when compared to the industry average, suggesting that the current management of debt levels should be re-evaluated. Along with the unfavorable debt-to-equity ratio, NRP maintains a poor quick ratio of 0.83, which illustrates the inability to avoid short-term cash problems.

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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