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7 Good Dividend Stocks to Buy While They Are Cheap

These undervalued picks each yield 3% or more.

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The best cheap stocks to buy now are not necessarily those trading for $1 or $2 a share — particularly when you’re talking about dividend stocks.

See Also from Kiplinger: Great Stocks With Rising Dividends

After all, picks trading that low often have gone through hard times. And while you can sometimes catch a falling knife and make a bundle on a swing trade, cheap dividend stocks are inherently long-term investments.

I mean, what’s the point of buying an income investment only to trade out of it before the ex-dividend date?

As the old saying goes, price is what you pay but value is what you get. So instead, investors should look at valuation metrics and payout ratios to determine which are the best cheap dividend stocks to buy now.

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I recently ran a stock screen to uncover income investments that fit the following criteria:

  • Comfortably profitable
  • Larger than $1 billion in market value
  • Trading for a price-to-earnings ratio of less than 7.5x next year’s earnings
  • A dividend yield of more than 3%

A number of companies popped up, including some volatile picks or overseas companies that only pay dividends once or twice a year.

See Also from InvestorPlace: 9 Best Cheap Stocks to Buy Under $10

So I hand-picked the seven best cheap dividend stocks and, I think you’ll agree, found a great grouping of high-quality companies that are bargains at current prices.

Here they are:

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GameStop Corp. (GME)

Sector: Specialty retail

Market Cap: $3 billion

Dividend Yield: 4.8%

Forward P/E: 6.9 vs. 18.4 for the S&P 500

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Year-To-Date Performance: 10% vs. 5% for the S&P 500

It may be a surprise to see GameStop Corp. (GME) on this list; the first knock against GME is that it’s a brick-and-mortar retailer in the age of e-commerce, and the second is that it sells physical video games in an age of mobile gaming and downloadable content that doesn’t need a cash register as part of the transaction.

However, there is still more than enough here. It’s fair to say that many investors have given up on GameStop, and now this retailer is one of the best cheap dividend stocks, with a lot of promise after it has rolled back in recent years.

GameStop is soundly profitable and paying out less than 40% of its earnings as dividends, so don’t think this big-time yield is an accounting trick. GME is one of the best cheap dividend stocks to buy now.

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Ford Motor Company (F)

Sector: Automakers

Market Cap: $47 billion

Dividend Yield: 4.7%

Forward P/E: 6.3 vs. 18.4 for the S&P 500

YTD Performance: -15% vs. 5% for the S&P 500

Ford Motor Company (F) has had a rough year, including missing its second-quarter earnings and recently seeing its shares take a tumble again.

However, as InvestorPlace Feature Writer Dan Burrows recently wrote in his Q2 wrapup, “Ford earnings could very well be peaking, but it’s not like anyone was willing to pay much for profits in the first place. We’re talking about a stock with a five-year average price-to-earnings multiple of 8.6.”

See Also from InvestorPlace: 10 Market Predictions for the Rest of 2016

The fact that Ford’s P/E ratio has slumped even further below its historical norm after recent earnings makes this automaker even more attractive, with a bargain valuation and a 4.7% dividend yield. You don’t need growth with income potential like that — and since it has already been beaten down, Ford is one of the best cheap dividend stocks to buy now that negativity has been priced in.

Prudential Financial Inc (PRU)

Sector: Insurance

Market Cap: $33 billion

Dividend yield: 3.7%

Forward P/E: 7.2 vs. 18.4 for the S&P 500

YTD Performance: -9.4% vs. 5% for the S&P 500

Insurance stocks like Prudential Financial Inc (PRU) have been under pressure in the last year or so, as the promise of “liftoff” for interest rates hasn’t exactly panned out.

After all, insurers have a lot cash on their balance sheets representing the “float” between when premiums paid in and claims are paid out … but low-risk, short-term assets are really the only place to park that cash, and these assets yield next to nothing in the current environment.

However, that reliable cash flow continues to support a robust dividend at Prudential, meaning investors have plenty of incentive to wait for a more favorable interest rate environment. PRU is one of the best cheap dividend stocks to buy now.

Navient Corp (NAVI)

Sector: Financial services

Market Cap: $4 billion

Dividend yield: 4.5%

Forward P/E: 6.9 vs. 18.4 for the S&P 500

YTD Performance: 19% vs. 5% for the S&P 500

Navient Corporation (NAVI) is a student loan company, formerly known as Sallie Mae, that has recently been on an upswing after bottoming out at the beginning of the year.

However, after significant outperformance, this cheap dividend stock still trades at about seven times next year’s earnings.

See Also from InvestorPlace: 2017’s 10 Best Stocks to Buy Now

It also is paying out less than a third of those earnings in its current dividend payout, meaning the generous 4.5% yield in NAVI is not just sustainable but likely to move higher. The expensive nature of college in America right now is a sad reality, and for better or worse, that will continue to provide a tailwind for lenders like Navient.

Huntsman

Sector: Chemicals

Market Cap: $4 billion

Dividend yield: 3.2%

Forward P/E: 7.3 vs. 18.4 for the S&P 500

YTD Performance: 32% vs. 5% for the S&P 500

Huntsman Corporation (HUN) is one of the few small-scale chemicals stocks that still exist, and in all honesty is one of the best cheap stocks to buy in part because it is very likely going to be buyout bait for a chemicals king like Dow Chemical Co (DOW) or E I Du Pont De Nemours And Co (DD).

But this is a piece about dividend stocks, so don’t just jump into HUN with the hopes of a big acquisition and a short-term pop — believe in the long-term income potential of this dividend payer trading at just 7 times earnings.

KKR & Co, L.P. (KKR)

Sector: Financial services

Market Cap: $12 billion

Dividend yield: 4.4%

Forward P/E: 6.7 vs. 18.4 for the S&P 500

YTD Performance: -10.1% vs. 5% for the S&P 500

Global investment group KKR & Co. L.P. (KKR) fell hard in mid-2015 and hasn’t really recovered. However, it continues to trade at a bargain valuation of about 7 times earnings. And while earnings are set to slump in the current year, Wall Street is expecting double-digit top line growth next year and a return to significant earnings growth.

See Also from InvestorPlace: 5 Amazon-Proof Retailer Stocks to Buy Now

To top it off, the dividend yield of 4.4% is based on the company’s last quarterly payout of 16 cents — the lowest distribution since Q2 2012. When earnings improve and payouts improve in kind, this cheap dividend stock could be a tremendous part of your income portfolio.

MetLife Inc (MET)

Sector: Insurance

Market Cap: $46 billion

Dividend yield: 3.7%

Forward P/E: 7.1 vs. 18.4 for the S&P 500

YTD Performance: -12.8% vs. 5% for the S&P 500

As with Prudential, Insurance stock MetLife Inc (MET) has also seen underperformance in a low-interest-rate environment. But this large-cap financial stock is paying a juicy dividend and is trading for a steep discount to next year’s earnings compared with the rest of the market.

See Also from Kiplinger: 6 Good Dividend Stocks Yielding 5% or More

It’s also worth noting that while MET revenues are stagnant, earnings are on a strong upward trend — from $4.86 in EPS last year to $5.37 this year, a 10.5% lift, and to a projected $5.89 next fiscal year for another 15% increase. With a growing bottom line and strong income, MetLife is a great cheap dividend stock to buy now.

This article is from Jeff Reeves of InvestorPlace.

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