About a year ago, I mentioned that Lyondell (NYSE:LYO) was attractively valued and worth a look. Dutch chemical firm Basell has decided that Lyondell is still attractive. It's offering $48 a share for the entire company, roughly a 20% premium to yesterday's closing price.

Credit for Lyondell doesn't belong with me, though. I was merely relaying what I had read in an interview with legendary investor John Neff, who has one of the best long-term track records of any fund manager. He earned that reputation by beating the S&P 500 by 3% a year for more than 30 years.

What made Lyondell attractive a year ago, and to Basell now, are its strong cash flows. I have to admit, I was also attracted by Lyondell's 3.9% dividend yield at the time. Assuming the $48 buyout price is reached in the next few months, a little more than a year of holding Lyondell would have earned a return of about 130%. Not bad for what was viewed largely as a value or income play with some safety in an above-average yield.

Investors looking for investments with similar characteristics, and seeking to follow Neff's practice of using above-average yields as an indicator of a possibly undervalued company, might want to check out Kimberly-Clark (NYSE:KMB) or Motley Fool Income Investor selection US Bancorp (NYSE:USB), which released its second-quarter results this morning. Both carry yields greater than 3%, exhibit strong returns on equity, and have businesses that are likely to endure for years to come.

US Bancorp is a Motley Fool Income Investor selection. To find out what stocks the market-beating service is recommending for new money, try it out with an all-access pass free for 30 days.

Nathan Parmelee has no ownership stake in any of the companies mentioned. The Motley Fool has an ironclad disclosure policy.