3 Hold-Rated Dividend Stocks: OCIR, TICC, 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

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."

OCI Resources

Dividend Yield: 9.00%

OCI Resources (NYSE: OCIR) shares currently have a dividend yield of 9.00%.

OCI Resources LP engages in the trona ore mining and soda ash production businesses in the United States and internationally. It processes trona ore into soda ash, which is a raw material in flat glass, container glass, detergents, chemicals, paper, and other consumer and industrial products. The company has a P/E ratio of 10.20.

The average volume for OCI Resources has been 31,600 shares per day over the past 30 days. OCI Resources has a market cap of $235.4 million and is part of the metals & mining industry. Shares are down 7.3% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Friday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates OCI Resources as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and impressive record of earnings per share growth. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself and poor profit margins.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 14.0%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 3.6%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio is somewhat low, currently at 0.97, and is less than that of the industry average, implying that there has been a relatively successful effort in the management of debt levels. Along with this, the company maintains a quick ratio of 3.24, which clearly demonstrates the ability to cover short-term cash needs.
  • Current return on equity exceeded its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a clear sign of strength within the company. In comparison to other companies in the Chemicals industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, OCI RESOURCES LP has underperformed in comparison with the industry average, but has greatly exceeded that of the S&P 500.
  • The gross profit margin for OCI RESOURCES LP is currently lower than what is desirable, coming in at 31.56%. Regardless of OCIR's low profit margin, it has managed to increase from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of 10.63% trails the industry average.
  • OCIR has underperformed the S&P 500 Index, declining 6.04% 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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