Investing

9 High-Quality Dividend Stocks for Volatile Times From Merrill Lynch

Home Depot Inc. (NYSE: HD) was a surprise to see on the list, but its return on equity was listed as 56.4% by Merrill Lynch — more than double that of rival Lowe’s — and FINVIZ even had a higher ROE screen. Home Depot’s market cap is $144 billion, and its yield is north of 2%. It is also a Dow Jones Industrial Average stock. Its shares were trading at $115.10, with a consensus price target of $141.57 and a 52-week range of $92.17 to $135.47. Merrill Lynch’s price objective for Home Depot is almost 10% above the consensus at $155.00.

Hershey Co. (NYSE: HSY) is a company that many investors forget about, but every kid and adult in the world can probably recognize what a Hershey bar or Kiss is. Hershey’s ROE was over 81% by the Merrill Lynch data and was 47% according to FINVIZ. The company has a $14 billion market cap and a yield of almost 2.6%. Shares of Hershey were at $90.74, compared to a consensus price target of $91.00 and a 52-week range of $82.41 to $107.57. Merrill Lynch has a $95.00 price objective on Hershey.

McDonald’s Corp. (NYSE: MCD) has been a turnaround stock that went from being a troubled stock to a darling stock again. Now we have to see if it can continue. Still, it is a highly defensive stock, with a $107 billion market cap and a yield of about 3%. Merrill Lynch showed its ROE at over 43%, and FINVIZ was at 42%. McDonald’s shares were trading at $117.50, with a consensus price target of $126.00 and a 52-week range of $87.50 to $124.83. Merrill Lynch’s price objective is slightly above the consensus at $130.00.

3M Co. (NYSE: MMM) had a ROE of 40.1% per Merrill Lynch and 37.9% per FINVIZ. The stock has recovered handily from its lows and its yield is now closer to 2.7%, with a $95 billion market cap. Shares of 3M were trading at $154.24, with a consensus analyst target of $159.87 and a 52-week range of $134.00 to $170.50. Merrill Lynch’s price objective of $178.00 is more than 10% above the consensus price target.

PepsiCo Inc. (NYSE: PEP) was shown by Merrill Lynch as having a 45.2% ROE, and FINVIZ had it at 31.9%. Its $143 billion market cap comes with a dividend yield of closer to 2.9%. Shares were last seen trading at $98.21, with a consensus price target of $105.43 (right in line with the $105 price objective from Merrill Lynch) and a 52-week range of $76.48 to $103.44.

General Dynamics Corp. (NYSE: GD) made the 25% ROE screen barely at both Merrill Lynch and FINVIZ, at 26.3% and 26.8%, respectively. Its market cap is nearly $42 billion, and it comes with a 2.1% dividend yield. Shares of General Dynamics were at $133.52, with a consensus price target of $159.69 and a 52-week range of $121.61 to $153.76. Merrill Lynch’s price objective is over $10 above the consensus at $170.00.

Honeywell International Inc. (NYSE: HON) also snuck in on the screen, with Merrill Lynch pointing to ROE of 26.6% versus 26.4% at FINVIZ. Honeywell has a $79 billion market cap and a 2.3% dividend yield. Its shares were recently trading at $103.61. The consensus analyst target is $114.81, and the 52-week range is $87.00 to $107.41. Merrill Lynch’s $116.00 price objective is just barely above the consensus analyst target.


We have an included an image of the full list of screened companies from Merrill Lynch and shown what the screen went down to on more strict criteria from FINVIZ.
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