Buying cheap dividend stocks is a great way for investors to maximize their potential earnings. Not only can they benefit from a good dividend yield but they can also position themselves to earn some good returns, especially with stocks that may not be trading all that high and have lots of room to rise in value. Below are three stocks that pay more than 4% in dividends and that could also be good value buys for investors today.
Enbridge (ENB 0.89%) is a blue-chip oil and gas stock that has been one of the more stable buys in the industry over the past few years. Up 13% in just the past year, Enbridge hasn't outperformed the S&P 500 and its 26% returns over that timeframe, but it's still a good result, especially as peers of the Canadian-based stock have struggled in recent years.
Not only is the company profitable, but Enbridge's dividend remains one of the better ones in the industry. Currently yielding a dividend of just over 6% per year, the company hiked its payouts back in December, from quarterly payments of 0.738 Canadian dollars to CA$0.81. That's an increase of 9.8%. Over five years the company's payouts have increased by 74%, averaging a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 11.7%.
With the stock trading at a forward price-to-earnings ratio (P/E) of 20 and just 1.8 times its book value, Enbridge is still a very cheap buy today. A big reason behind that is the risks involved in oil and gas today; many investors want to stay away from the industry as much as possible. However, Enbridge is one of the safer buys investors can make in oil and gas, and it's an opportunity to scoop up a great dividend at an even better price.
2. Medical Properties
Medical Properties Trust (MPW 7.42%) is in a more stable industry than Enbridge, so it's no surprise that investors have been more bullish on the stock. It's generated returns north of 32% and well in excess of not just Enbridge, but the S&P 500 as well. The stock also offers geographical diversification, with properties in many states across the U.S. as well as Germany, Spain, and the U.K.
Although its dividend yield of 4.8% is a bit lower than Enbridge's, Medical Properties makes up for that with the recurring income and stability the stock offers investors. Currently, the company pays its shareholders a quarterly dividend of $0.26 and it too has increased its payments over the years. In five years, Medical Properties has increased its payments by 24%, from its payouts of $0.21 in 2015. That averages out to a more modest CAGR of 4.4%.
Like Enbridge, Medical Properties stock is also trading at some decent multiples, with its forward P/E around 20 and its price-to-book multiple a little lower at 1.7. This low-volatility stock can be a great way to balance out some of the risk investors may have in their portfolios with a stock like Enbridge.
3. Six Flags
Six Flags Entertainment (SIX 1.08%) is the worst-performing stock on this list, falling more than 40% in just one year. Unfortunately, the company's financials have been inconsistent over the past four quarters, ranging from a loss of $69 million to a profit of $180 million. Overall, it's generated $270 million over the past four quarters and it still remains a strong business.
Growth is a big question mark moving forward, but with the stock trading at only 11 times its earnings, investors aren't paying a premium to own Six Flags. However, there's some risk facing the company as attendance figures are down and challenges in developing parks in China could mean investors see even softer revenue numbers in the coming quarters.
In turn, that could put pressure on the company's dividend. Six Flags raised its quarterly dividend in November as payments rose from $0.82 to $0.83, for a modest hike of 1.2%. They're up 60% from the $0.52 quarterly dividend that Six Flags was paying five years ago, which averages a CAGR of 9.8%.
Which dividend stock should you buy today?
All of the dividend stocks listed above are cheap, but they're not all the same risk levels.
Six Flags offers the highest payout but it could be in jeopardy of cutting or suspending its payouts if the company's revenue doesn't improve and if its net income lands back in the red. But if the company surprises and has a good year, its stock could skyrocket given how much it has fallen in the past 12 months.
Enbridge is a bit safer, but any oil and gas stock is going to expose investors to at least some moderate risk, given how volatile oil prices can be. That leaves Medical Properties as the safest stock to pick from this list.
Ultimately, whether these stocks are a fit for your portfolio will come down to your personal investment strategy and how much appetite you have for risk. Each of these stocks can produce a lot of recurring income for investors.