Two 3% Yielders Not To Ignore

Includes: ESV, GE
by: Bret Jensen

After a pretty continuous rally over the past seven months, value and yield are even harder to find that they were earlier in the year. I am running my portfolio in a much more conservative manner than I was when I was more aggressive during the post-election decline. I have sold some of my more aggressive growth stocks that have had huge run ups since November and added to the value/income side of the ledger. These provide solid yield and should hold up better should we have a significant pull back in the market during the second quarter or summer a la 2010, 2011 & 2012. Here are two three percent yielders that I have been adding to recently.

Ensco (NYSE:ESV) - This $14B market capitalization firm provides offshore contract drilling services to the oil and gas industry worldwide. The stock yields 3.3% and distributes its payout monthly. The company is also paying 50% more out than three years ago. Earnings are on a nice uptrend. Ensco made just under $5.50 a share in FY2012. Analysts project it will make ~$6.65 a share this fiscal year and ~$7.75 a share in FY2014. The company beat on the top and the bottom line when it last reported quarterly results in late April. It marked the fourth straight quarter Ensco easily beat earnings estimates. The company is expected to grow revenues at a ~15% CAGR over the next two years and the stork sports a minuscule five year projected PEG (.31).

General Electric (NYSE:GE) - This huge American multi-national has done a commendable job shrinking GE Capital's balance sheet and the share of its contribution to overall earnings over the last few years. It also has shed its $17B media businesses. The company recently raised it exposure to oil services by buying Lufkin Industries (NASDAQ:LUFK) for $3.3B. This leaves the company's main business as big ticket industrial and medical technology goods as well as a growing presence in energy. This should help GE's long term growth - China & India are going to buy a lot of planes (IE, Jet engines) and medical equipment over the next decade. Energy should also have better growth than the overall market in the coming years.

GE yields 3.3% and has raised its dividend payout by 90% since the end of the financial crisis. The company has an AA+ rated balance sheet. GE sells at ~8x operating cash flow and has a very reasonable five year projected PEG (1.24) for a three percent plus yielder.

Disclosure: I am long ESV, GE. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.