3 Hold-Rated Dividend Stocks: ATAX, TAXI, TCRD

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."

America First Multifamily Investors

Dividend Yield: 8.90%

America First Multifamily Investors (NASDAQ: ATAX) shares currently have a dividend yield of 8.90%.

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 29.53.

The average volume for America First Multifamily Investors has been 100,200 shares per day over the past 30 days. America First Multifamily Investors has a market cap of $338.0 million and is part of the real estate industry. Shares are up 6.7% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Monday.

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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, good cash flow from operations and expanding profit margins. 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 revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 9.5%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 0.8%. 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 significantly increased by 121.09% to $4.17 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, AMERICA FIRST MULTIFAMILY-LP has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of -73.64%.
  • The gross profit margin for AMERICA FIRST MULTIFAMILY-LP is currently very high, coming in at 77.77%. 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 18.96% compares favorably to the industry average.
  • 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 Thrifts & Mortgage Finance industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, AMERICA FIRST MULTIFAMILY-LP underperformed against that of the industry average and is significantly less than that of the S&P 500.
  • The share price of AMERICA FIRST MULTIFAMILY-LP has not done very well: it is down 6.49% 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. 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.

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Medallion Financial

Dividend Yield: 9.20%

Medallion Financial (NASDAQ: TAXI) shares currently have a dividend yield of 9.20%.

Medallion Financial Corp., through its subsidiaries, operates as a specialty finance company in the United States. The company engages in originating, acquiring, and servicing loans that finance taxicab medallions and various types of commercial businesses. The company has a P/E ratio of 9.77.

The average volume for Medallion Financial has been 219,900 shares per day over the past 30 days. Medallion Financial has a market cap of $268.4 million and is part of the financial services industry. Shares are up 9.1% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Monday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates Medallion Financial as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, expanding profit margins and growth in earnings per share. However, as a counter to these strengths, we find that the stock has had a generally disappointing performance in the past year.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 5.2%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 28.8%. 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 MEDALLION FINANCIAL CORP is rather high; currently it is at 59.86%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 59.45% significantly outperformed against the industry average.
  • MEDALLION FINANCIAL CORP has improved earnings per share by 7.4% in the most recent quarter compared to 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, MEDALLION FINANCIAL CORP reported lower earnings of $1.14 versus $1.16 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.28 versus $1.14).
  • 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 Capital Markets industry and the overall market, MEDALLION FINANCIAL CORP's return on equity is below that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • TAXI has underperformed the S&P 500 Index, declining 18.88% from its price level of one year ago. 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.

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THL Credit

Dividend Yield: 11.20%

THL Credit (NASDAQ: TCRD) shares currently have a dividend yield of 11.20%.

THL Credit, Inc. is a business development company specializing in direct and fund of fund investments. The fund seeks to invest in debt and equity securities of middle market companies. The company has a P/E ratio of 9.60.

The average volume for THL Credit has been 155,800 shares per day over the past 30 days. THL Credit has a market cap of $409.9 million and is part of the financial services industry. Shares are up 4.2% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Monday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates THL Credit as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, expanding profit margins and good cash flow from operations. However, as a counter to these strengths, 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:
  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 5.2%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 30.5%. 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 THL CREDIT INC is rather high; currently it is at 64.64%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Regardless of the strong results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of 19.53% trails the industry average.
  • Net operating cash flow has increased to -$54.38 million or 18.79% when compared to the same quarter last year. Despite an increase in cash flow of 18.79%, THL CREDIT INC is still growing at a significantly lower rate than the industry average of 227.79%.
  • 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 55.9% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $10.69 million to $4.72 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 Capital Markets industry and the overall market, THL CREDIT INC's return on equity is below that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.

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