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Ken Fisher is the founder and CEO of Fisher Investments and the author of eight books, including four New York Times bestsellers. Ken Fisher has been writing the "Portfolio Strategy" column for Forbes for over 26 years. Since Forbes started measuring returns in 1997, Ken Fisher's picks have outperformed the SPDR S&P 500 (NYSEARCA:SPY) by 5.2 percentage points on average annually.

In early February, Fisher expressed his forecast for the stock market and global macroeconomy for the year ahead. According to Fisher, the growing corporate revenues and profits and attractive stock valuations are likely to continue in 2012. Below we've compiled a list of Ken Fisher's high-dividend stock picks from Fisher Asset Management's most recent 13F filing. We required a minimum dividend yield of 3.5% and market cap of $5 billion. We obtained market data from Finviz and MSN Money, and hedge fund holdings from Insider Monkey.

Stock

Market Cap

Sector*

Dividend Yield

P/E

Beta

MERCK & CO. INC. (MRK)

117.1

2

4.4%

19.0

0.62

PFIZER INC (PFE)

165.4

2

4.0%

20.0

0.72

CLIFFS NATURAL RESOURCES INC (CLF)

9.5

4

3.8%

5.7

2.45

HEINZ HJ CO (HNZ)

16.9

1

3.6%

17.6

0.54

GENERAL ELECTRIC CO (GE)

201.1

3

3.6%

15.5

1.6

JOHNSON & JOHNSON (JNJ)

176.4

2

3.6%

18.4

0.53

FREEPORT-MCMORAN COPPER & GOLD (FCX)

33.9

4

3.5%

7.5

1.95

*1-Consumer Goods, 2- Healthcare, 3- Industrial Goods, 4- Basic Materials

Click to enlarge all images.

1. Merck: Merck provides various health solutions worldwide. Merck has the highest dividend yield among the stocks we screened in Fisher's 13F portfolio. Shares recently traded at $38.26 with a trailing price to earnings of 18.96 and a forward price to earnings of 10.37. Merck has a 4.37% dividend yield and gained 19.91% during the past 12 months. The stock has a market cap of $117.1 billion and total debt/equity ratio of 0.32. The company has an estimated growth rate of -2.62% for this year and 4.11% for next five years. Fisher had $12 million invested in Merck shares.

As can be seen from above graph, Merck had growing sales over the last 10 years; however, we cannot say the same thing for its total net income values.

2. Pfizer: Pfizer is one of the leading biopharmaceutical companies operating worldwide. Shares recently traded at $21.92 with a trailing price to earnings of 19.95 and a forward price to earnings of 9.34. Pfizer has a 4.01% dividend yield and gained 10.64% during the past 12 months. The stock has a market cap of $165.4 billion and total debt/equity ratio of 0.47. It has an estimated growth rate of 3.52% for this year and 2.67% for next five years. Fisher had $471 million invested in Pfizer shares.

3. Cliffs Natural Resources: Cliffs Natural Resources is a mining and natural resources company. Shares recently traded at $71.16 with a trailing price to earnings of 5.7 and a forward price to earnings of 5.78. It has a 3.75% dividend yield and lost 30.3% during the past 12 months. The stock has a market cap of $9.5 billion and total debt/equity ratio of 0.64. The company has an estimated growth rate of 25.14% for this year and 0.56% for next five years. Fisher had $82 million invested in Cliffs Natural Resources shares.

The company had growing Sales and Net Income over the last 10 years. Cliffs Natural Resources also has very low P/E ratio, which makes it very attractive. It has a very high beta ratio, which is making the stock very risky. Shares gained 6.6% on Thursday due to the New York Fed's president's statement about the U.S. economy and latest expectations related to China's growth. Zacks' average brokerage recommendation for this stock is moderate buy; nine out of 13 analysts' ratings are strong buy.

4. H. J. Heinz: Heinz manufactures and markets food products worldwide. Shares recently traded at $52.86 with a trailing price to earnings of 17.57 and a forward price to earnings of 14.68. Heinz has a 3.64% dividend yield and gained 10.04% during the past 12 months. The stock has a market cap of $16.9 billion and total debt/equity ratio of 1.76. It has an estimated growth rate of 7.49% for this year and 7.3% for next five years. Fisher had $5 million invested in Heinz shares.

5. General Electric: General Electric operates as a technology and financial services company worldwide. Shares recently traded at $19.3 with a trailing price to earnings of 15.46 and a forward price to earnings of 10.8. It has a 3.58% dividend yield and lost 2.31% during the past 12 months. The stock has a market cap of $201.1 billion and total debt/equity ratio of 3.89. The company has an estimated growth rate of 14.29% for this year and 12.88% for next five years. Fisher had $397 million invested in General Electric shares.

6. Johnson & Johnson: Johnson & Johnson provides various products in the health care field worldwide. It is the largest dividend position in Fisher's latest 13F portfolio. Shares recently traded at $64.15 with a trailing price to earnings of 18.43 and a forward price to earnings of 11.79. It has a 3.56% dividend yield and gained 11.01% during the past 12 months. The stock has a market cap of $176.4 billion and total debt/equity ratio of 0.34. The company has an estimated growth rate of 6.46% for this year and 6.33% for next five years. Fisher had $668 million invested in Johnson & Johnson shares.

7. Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold: Freeport-McMoRan engages in the exploration, mining, and production of mineral resources. Shares recently traded at $37.89 with a trailing price to earnings of 7.5 and a forward price to earnings of 6.66. It has a 3.49% dividend yield and lost 33.99% during the past 12 months. The stock has a market cap of $33.9 billion and total debt/equity ratio of 0.23. The company has an estimated growth rate of 25.47% for this year and 5.34% for next five years. Fisher had $247 million invested in Freeport-McMoRan shares.

Source: Ken Fisher's 7 High-Dividend Stock Picks