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

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."

Valley National Bancorp

Dividend Yield: 4.60%

Valley National Bancorp (NYSE: VLY) shares currently have a dividend yield of 4.60%.

Valley National Bancorp operates as the holding company for the Valley National Bank that provides commercial, retail, insurance, and wealth management financial services products. The company operates through Commercial Lending, Consumer Lending, and Investment Management segments. The company has a P/E ratio of 17.00.

The average volume for Valley National Bancorp has been 1,628,900 shares per day over the past 30 days. Valley National Bancorp has a market cap of $2.2 billion and is part of the banking industry. Shares are down 3.4% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Friday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates Valley National Bancorp as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its expanding profit margins and reasonable valuation levels. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself, deteriorating net income and disappointing return on equity.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The gross profit margin for VALLEY NATIONAL BANCORP is currently very high, coming in at 74.67%. Regardless of VLY's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, VLY's net profit margin of 13.75% compares favorably to the industry average.
  • 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 Commercial Banks industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 36.5% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $39.61 million to $25.14 million.
  • 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. When compared to other companies in the Commercial Banks industry and the overall market, VALLEY NATIONAL BANCORP's return on equity is below that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.

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Blackstone Mortgage

Dividend Yield: 6.80%

Blackstone Mortgage (NYSE: BXMT) shares currently have a dividend yield of 6.80%.

Blackstone Mortgage Trust, Inc., a real estate finance company, originates and purchases senior loans collateralized by properties in North America and Europe. It operates through two segments, Loan Origination and CT Legacy Portfolio. The company has a P/E ratio of 16.49.

The average volume for Blackstone Mortgage has been 633,200 shares per day over the past 30 days. Blackstone Mortgage has a market cap of $1.8 billion and is part of the real estate industry. Shares are up 5.9% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Friday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates Blackstone Mortgage as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, increase in stock price during the past year and impressive record of earnings per share growth. However, as a counter to these strengths, we find that the company's return on equity has been disappointing.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • BXMT's very impressive revenue growth greatly exceeded the industry average of 10.1%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues leaped by 131.0%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • Compared to where it was a year ago today, the stock is now trading at a higher level, reflecting both the market's overall trend during that period and the fact that the company's earnings growth has been robust. Despite the fact that it has already risen in the past year, there is currently no conclusive evidence that warrants the purchase or sale of this stock.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 62.67% to $23.18 million when compared to the same quarter last year. The firm also exceeded the industry average cash flow growth rate of 12.85%.
  • 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. When compared to other companies in the Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) industry and the overall market, BLACKSTONE MORTGAGE TR INC's return on equity is below that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.

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Memorial Production Partners

Dividend Yield: 12.90%

Memorial Production Partners (NASDAQ: MEMP) shares currently have a dividend yield of 12.90%.

Memorial Production Partners LP, through its subsidiary, engages in the acquisition, development, exploitation, and production of oil and natural gas properties. The company has a P/E ratio of 10.30.

The average volume for Memorial Production Partners has been 826,100 shares per day over the past 30 days. Memorial Production Partners has a market cap of $1.4 billion and is part of the energy industry. Shares are up 16.6% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Friday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates Memorial Production Partners as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, compelling growth in net income and impressive record of earnings per share growth. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including generally higher debt management risk, 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 20.3%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 33.1%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry. The net income increased by 1403.2% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $10.86 million to $163.28 million.
  • MEMORIAL PRODUCTION PRTRS LP 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, MEMORIAL PRODUCTION PRTRS LP increased its bottom line by earning $0.85 versus $0.11 in the prior year. For the next year, the market is expecting a contraction of 1.2% in earnings ($0.84 versus $0.85).
  • The debt-to-equity ratio of 1.49 is relatively high when compared with the industry average, suggesting a need for better debt level management. To add to this, MEMP has a quick ratio of 0.55, this demonstrates the lack of ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly decreased to $41.12 million or 50.07% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing the cash generation rate to the industry average, the firm's growth is significantly lower.

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