3 Buy-Rated Dividend Stocks Leading The Pack: EDR, RCI, HE

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."

Education Realty

Dividend Yield: 4.20%

Education Realty (NYSE: EDR) shares currently have a dividend yield of 4.20%.

EdR is a real estate investment trust. The firm invests in the real estate markets of United States. It invests collegiate housing communities. The firm develops, acquires, owns, and manages collegiate housing communities located near university campuses. The company has a P/E ratio of 52.50.

The average volume for Education Realty has been 1,421,200 shares per day over the past 30 days. Education Realty has a market cap of $1.6 billion and is part of the real estate industry. Shares are up 31.3% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates Education Realty as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income and reasonable valuation levels. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The revenue growth greatly exceeded the industry average of 13.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 47.0%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 475.00% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 29.53% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. 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.
  • EDUCATION REALTY TRUST 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. During the past fiscal year, EDUCATION REALTY TRUST INC turned its bottom line around by earning $0.05 versus -$0.01 in the prior year.
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) industry. The net income increased by 579.6% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from -$4.46 million to $21.40 million.

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

Rogers Communications

Dividend Yield: 4.10%

Rogers Communications (NYSE: RCI) shares currently have a dividend yield of 4.10%.

Rogers Communications Inc. operates as a communications and media company in Canada. Its Wireless segment provides wireless voice and high-speed data communication services to consumers and businesses under the Rogers, Fido, and Chatr brands; and wireless devices and applications. The company has a P/E ratio of 13.59.

The average volume for Rogers Communications has been 324,300 shares per day over the past 30 days. Rogers Communications has a market cap of $16.0 billion and is part of the telecommunications industry. Shares are down 11.1% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

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

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

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The revenue growth significantly trails the industry average of 61.0%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 0.9%. 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.
  • Net operating cash flow has remained constant at $1,057.00 million with no significant change when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, ROGERS COMMUNICATIONS has modestly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of -8.02%.
  • 40.01% is the gross profit margin for ROGERS COMMUNICATIONS which we consider to be strong. Regardless of RCI's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, RCI's net profit margin of 10.20% is significantly lower than the industry average.
  • 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 Wireless Telecommunication Services industry and the overall market, ROGERS COMMUNICATIONS's return on equity significantly exceeds that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • The share price of ROGERS COMMUNICATIONS has not done very well: it is down 10.71% 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. Turning toward the future, the fact that the stock has come down in price over the past year should not necessarily be interpreted as a negative; it is one of the factors that makes this stock an attractive investment.

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

Hawaiian Electric Industries

Dividend Yield: 4.50%

Hawaiian Electric Industries (NYSE: HE) shares currently have a dividend yield of 4.50%.

Hawaiian Electric Industries, Inc., through its subsidiaries, is engaged in electric utility and banking businesses primarily in the State of Hawaii. The company is involved in the production, purchase, transmission, distribution, and sale of electricity. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.97.

The average volume for Hawaiian Electric Industries has been 791,100 shares per day over the past 30 days. Hawaiian Electric Industries has a market cap of $2.8 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are up 5.5% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

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

TheStreet Ratings rates Hawaiian Electric Industries as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, increase in stock price during the past year, notable return on equity, good cash flow from operations and reasonable valuation levels. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • Despite its growing revenue, the company underperformed as compared with the industry average of 7.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 4.6%. 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.
  • HAWAIIAN ELECTRIC INDS' 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, HAWAIIAN ELECTRIC INDS increased its bottom line by earning $1.62 versus $1.43 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.63 versus $1.62).
  • 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 Electric Utilities industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, HAWAIIAN ELECTRIC INDS has outperformed in comparison with the industry average, but has underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500.
  • 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. 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.
  • Net operating cash flow has slightly increased to $127.22 million or 9.73% when compared to the same quarter last year. Despite an increase in cash flow, HAWAIIAN ELECTRIC INDS's average is still marginally south of the industry average growth rate of 17.75%.

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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