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This is my first article/blog ever. I hope it is useful to all of you individual investors and anybody else taking the time to read it. Please leave comments or questions. Constructive criticism is welcomed.

While Jim Cramer can be over-animated or a bit berserk at times, there is no denying that he knows his stuff. His investing strategies for the individual investor have proven track records and are easy to understand. One useful stock picking strategy he uses is called "accidental high yielder." This refers to a stock that has a temporarily higher than usual yield because the bear market has brought down the share price. While the fundamentals may still be strong, the share price can be hammered in an oversold market where investors are scared and running for the exits. This goes back to the good old value investing principles used by the likes of Warren Buffett and his predecessor Benjamin Graham: buying stock of a fundamentally strong company when its intrinsic value has not yet been realized by the market.

Waste Management, Inc. (NYSE:WM) is a provider of waste management services (collection, disposal, recycling) in the Unites States. Its stock is currently trading at $33 with a whopping 4.3% dividend yield. With 462.9 million shares outstanding and a $1.42 per-share annual dividend, Waste Management will spend about $657.3 million giving back to their shareholders in 2012. Bringing in about $2.5 billion in cash from its operations in 2011, I'd say it's a very safe and stable dividend. They have also been steadily increasing the payout over the years, as shown below in my chart. I expect them to continue this trend.

Shares of WM are about 13% off of their 52 week high of $38.06. This has brought the dividend yield up to the 4.3% it is at right now. I believe the depressed share price does not reflect the intrinsic value, making it an opportunistic buy. Historically, the yield has topped 4% only a few times. Each time this has happened, great gains have followed (shown in chart). This is the "accidental high yield" Cramer refers to.

DatePriceDividendYield
3/31/2012$ 34.96$ 0.364.06%
12/31/2011$ 32.71$ 0.344.16%
9/30/2011$ 32.56$ 0.344.18%
6/30/2011$ 37.27$ 0.343.65%
3/31/2011$ 37.34$ 0.343.64%
12/31/2010$ 36.87$ 0.323.42%
9/30/2010$ 35.74$ 0.323.53%
6/30/2010$ 31.29$ 0.324.03%
3/31/2010$ 34.43$ 0.323.66%
12/31/2009$ 33.81$ 0.293.43%
9/30/2009$ 29.82$ 0.293.89%
6/30/2009$ 28.16$ 0.294.12%
3/31/2009$ 25.60$ 0.294.53%
12/31/2008$ 32.44$ 0.273.33%
9/30/2008$ 31.49$ 0.273.43%
6/30/2008$ 37.71$ 0.272.86%
3/31/2008$ 33.56$ 0.273.22%
12/31/2007$ 32.67$ 0.242.94%
9/30/2007$ 37.74$ 0.242.54%
6/30/2007$ 39.05$ 0.242.46%
3/31/2007$ 34.41$ 0.242.79%
12/31/2006$ 36.77$ 0.222.39%
9/30/2006$ 36.68$ 0.222.40%
6/30/2006$ 35.88$ 0.222.45%
3/31/2006$ 35.30$ 0.222.49%
12/31/2005$ 30.35$ 0.202.64%
9/30/2005$ 28.61$ 0.202.80%
6/30/2005$ 28.34$ 0.202.82%
3/31/2005$ 28.85$ 0.202.77%
12/31/2004$ 29.94$ 0.192.51%
9/30/2004$ 27.34$ 0.192.74%
6/30/2004$ 30.65$ 0.192.45%
3/31/2004$ 30.18$ 0.192.49%
12/31/2003$ 29.60$ 0.010.14%
9/30/2003$ 26.17$ 0.010.15%
6/30/2003$ 24.09$ 0.010.17%
3/31/2003$ 21.18$ 0.010.19%
12/31/2002$ 22.92$ 0.010.17%
9/30/2002$ 23.32$ 0.010.17%

On March 31, 2009, the yield topped out at 4.53% at a price of $25.60. This came after a sizable correction due to the choppy 2008 markets. When the price caught back up to the yield a year later on March 31, 2010, shares had gained about 35%.

This happened again on June 30, 2010. The yield hit 4.03% at a price of $31.29. A year later, the stock had risen to $37.27 bringing the yield back down to 3.65%. This was a 19% gain.

Looking even further back to its earlier dividend paying days on June 30, 2005, the yield was up to 2.82%. On June 30, 2006, shares had increased by 27%.

Today's market is largely moved by macro concerns over Europe and other foreign countries. This has brought US stocks down, presenting investors with some great buying opportunities. Waste Management is an excellent "accidental high yielder" buy right now. Its depressed stock price can bring your portfolio some great capital gains, as well as a big, solid dividend.

Source: High-Yielding Waste Management