Yield Hogging For 2012

Includes: SNH, SPH, SPOK
by: Mitchell Harris

There are some stocks out there that have been punished in the past 12 months that are offering VERY attractive yields. One of them is a turnaround play, and by that I mean most if not all of the bad news has already been priced into the stock. They have good business models. I chose steady businesses in industries that have staying power, such as fuel services, communications, and REITS. Diversification is key. Let's discuss three of them.

Suburban Propane Partners (NYSE:SPH) markets and distributes propane, fuel oil and refined fuels. The stock is 2 points off of its 52-week low currently trading at around $42. Its yield is 8.2%, and trades at a 15 PE multiple. It has $90 million in cash, which represents almost $3 per share. It has been adversely affected by the warm weather trends so far this winter. The street analysts have a "hold" on the stock with a fair value of $47. It has a 128% payout ratio as well. I think the stock is cheap down here. Make sure you put stops in to protect your downside.

US Mobility Inc (USMO) provides communications solutions to the healthcare, government, enterprise, and emergency response sectors in the U.S. The stock is $14.75 per share off its high of just under $18. There is room to go here, but in the meantime take the 6.7% dividend. 80% of the stock is held by institutions and it has almost $2 a share in cash. In the past 6 months there have been no insider sales of stock, only purchases. The payout ratio is 36%, with 46% profit margins and a 53% ROE. I think it is undervalued here.

Senior Housing Properties Trust (NYSE:SNH) invests in senior housing projects in the U.S. It owns 85 assisted living facilities, 61 skilled nursing facilities, 36 independent living facilities and 2 hospitals. It is taxed as a REIT, so it distributes 90% of its REIT taxable income to its shareholders. You won't get much price movement on this one as it trades pretty close to the vest. The low is around $20 and the high is $25 and SNH has traded around $22.50 recently. The yield is 6.6% and if that is enough for you in this market, then be happy with it. The baby boomer population is getting up there in age (no offense) and this type of housing/service will always be needed. With 84% held by institutions and operating margins of 56%, and a payout ratio of 142%, this is a nice holding for a portfolio.

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.