By Scott Rubin
What are the cheapest large-cap dividend stocks in the market right now? The following is a list of six stocks that are very cheap on an earnings basis and have dividend yields over 2 percent. Almost all of these names should be familiar to investors as they are engaged in high-quality, proven businesses. The stocks highlighted below have market caps over $10 billion, dividend yields over 2 percent, and trade at trailing and forward P/E ratios of less than 10 and PEG ratios of below 1. The six names featured are also all in positive territory in 2012.
Aflac (AFL) - Insurance companies are overly represented on this list and many well-known names remain cheap despite strong performance in 2012. Aflac shares, for example, are up better than 12 percent in 2012 and 34 percent in the last 52 weeks, but the stock remains cheap on an earnings basis. The shares trade at a trailing P/E of 8.88, a forward P/E of 7.08 and a PEG ratio of just 0.72. At current levels, AFL is also yielding around 2.70 percent.
Cummins (CMI) - This industrial bellwether has been volatile in 2012 as investors' constantly changing perceptions of global growth have been reflected in CMI's share price. Year-to-date, however, the stock is up a little better than 12 percent, although it is well off its best levels of the year. Cummins appears inexpensive given its high-profile pedigree in the industrial space. The stock trades at a trailing P/E of 9.83, a forward P/E of 9.31 and a PEG ratio of 0.82. At current levels, the shares are also yielding around 2 percent.
MetLife (MET) - MetLife is another insurance company that is trading at an attractive valuation. The stock currently has a trailing P/E of 5.35, a forward P/E of 6.31 and a PEG ratio of 0.63. Next year, analysts are projecting that the company will grow its revenues by 6.40 percent. The stock has been a reasonably strong performer year-to-date, rising a little less than 13 percent. MET is not only relatively cheap, but it also is yielding around 2 percent at current levels.
Prudential Financial (PRU) - This global insurance and financial services company was hit hard in the wake of the mortgage meltdown, but the stock has been bouncing back in recent years. In 2012, shares have been volatile, but have managed to gain around 15 percent after a sharp rally over the last couple of months. Valuation still looks compelling, although investors remain leery of the financial and insurance sector. The stock trades at a trailing P/E of 8.05, a forward P/E of 7.37 and a PEG ratio of 0.74. The stock is also sporting a healthy 2.50 percent dividend yield.
Seagate Technology (STX) - This hard-disk maker has had an extremely low valuation for some time, and seems to be a frequent target of buyout rumors. Despite investors' trepidation to pay a high multiple for the stock, STX has been on fire over the last year, rising 149 percent. In 2012 alone, the stock has climbed around 82 percent. One of the biggest holders of Seagate stock is noted value investor David Einhorn's Greenlight Capital hedge fund. The stock is currently trading at a trailing P/E of 4.57, a forward P/E of 4.47 and a PEG ratio of 0.14. Seagate also is yielding around 4.30 percent at current levels.
Western Union (WU) - Despite a recent run-up in WU's share price, the company continues to trade at a low valuation. Year-to-date, the stock has risen a little better than 3 percent, but is up around 15 percent over the last 3 months. At current levels, WU is yielding a little more than 2 percent. The stock trades at a trailing P/E of 9.71, a forward P/E of 9.90 and a PEG ratio of 0.96.
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Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.