What To Hold: 3 Hold-Rated Dividend Stocks CAPL, IRET, FSC

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."

CrossAmerica Partners

Dividend Yield: 10.30%

CrossAmerica Partners (NYSE: CAPL) shares currently have a dividend yield of 10.30%.

CrossAmerica Partners LP engages in the wholesale distribution of motor fuels, and ownership and leasing of real estate used in the retail distribution of motor fuels in the United States. It distributes gasoline and diesel fuel to approximately 1,100 sites located in 25 states. The company has a P/E ratio of 45.35.

The average volume for CrossAmerica Partners has been 102,900 shares per day over the past 30 days. CrossAmerica Partners has a market cap of $768.8 million and is part of the energy industry. Shares are down 10.8% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Friday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates CrossAmerica Partners as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income and reasonable valuation levels. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself, generally higher debt management risk and poor profit margins.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • CROSSAMERICA PARTNERS 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 year. We feel that this trend should continue. This trend suggests that the performance of the business is improving. During the past fiscal year, CROSSAMERICA PARTNERS LP turned its bottom line around by earning $0.26 versus -$0.22 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($0.50 versus $0.26).
  • 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 159.6% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from -$2.97 million to $1.77 million.
  • The company's current return on equity greatly increased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of significant strength within the corporation. When compared to other companies in the Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry and the overall market, CROSSAMERICA PARTNERS LP's return on equity has significantly outperformed in comparison with the industry average, but has underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500.
  • CAPL's stock share price has done very poorly compared to where it was a year ago: Despite any rallies, the net result is that it is down by 30.49%, which is also worse that the performance of the S&P 500 Index. Investors have so far failed to pay much attention to the earnings improvements the company has managed to achieve over the last quarter. Despite the heavy decline in its share price, this stock is still more expensive (when compared to its current earnings) than most other companies in its industry.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio is very high at 2.02 and currently higher than the industry average, implying increased risk associated with the management of debt levels within the company. Along with this, the company manages to maintain a quick ratio of 0.48, which clearly demonstrates the inability to cover short-term cash needs.

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