Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Market Wrap-up for Dec. 22 – The Worst-Performing Dividend Stocks of 2014

While major equities indexes are almost certain to register solid gains for the year, the markets have seen plenty of turmoil as well. Here are the worst-performing dividend stocks of 2014.

The Ground Rules

Before diving into the list, let’s first establish some ground rules for our study. Here are the screening rules I used to come up with the list of laggards:

Stock must be a current dividend payer, and still trading on the NYSE/NASDAQ/AMEX Stock’s market cap must be greater than $100 million Stock must be a traditional equity (for our purposes, we’ll exclude ETFs and other funds) Stock must have lost at least 50% of its value year-to-date

Now that we have our simple rules in place, let’s see what stocks were the biggest disasters of the year so far.

The Worst of the Worst Company Symbol Price YTD % Change
Walter Energy (WLT) 1.48 -91%
Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. (CLF) 6.69 -74%
Penn West Petroleum Ltd (PWE) 2.33 -72%
Mid-Con Energy Partners LP (MCEP) 6.51 -72%
Portugal Telecom S.A. (PT) 1.26 -71%
Barrett Business Services (BBSI) 28.75 -69%
Nu Skin Enterprises (NUS) 43.55 -68%
Valhi Inc. (VHI) 5.66 -68%
Companhia Sider (SID) 2.11 -66%
Carbo Ceramics (CRR) 42.34 -64%
Navios Maritime (NM) 4.18 -63%
Safe Bulkers, Inc. (SB) 3.97 -62%
Breitburn Energy Partners L.P. (BBEP) 7.82 -62%
Comstock Resources Inc (CRK) 7.23 -60%
SandRidge Mississippian Trust (SDT) 3.66 -60%
Linn Energy LLC. (LINE) 12.24 -60%
Investors Bancorp, Inc. (ISBC) 11.02 -57%
Eagle Rock Energy Partners L.P. (EROC) 2.58 -57%
Arch Coal (ACI) 1.93 -57%
Arcos Dorados Holdings (ARCO) 5.27 -57%
Peabody Energy (BTU) 8.55 -56%
LRR Energy L.P. (LRE) 7.49 -56%
TransGlobe Energy Corporation (TGA) 3.7 -56%
Enduro Royalty Trust (NDRO) 5.38 -56%
Gerdau S.A. (GGB) 3.58 -54%
Pacific Coast Oil Trust (ROYT) 5.8 -54%
Baytex Energy Corp (BTE) 17.96 -54%
SM Energy Co. (SM) 38.76 -53%
Legacy Reserves L.P. (LGCY) 13.28 -53%
Yamana Gold (AUY) 4.1 -52%
Sturm, Ruger & Co., Inc. (RGR) 34.85 -52%
W&T Offshore Inc. (WTI) 7.63 -52%
Whiting USA Trust II (WHZ) 6.49 -51%
Chicago Bridge & Iron (CBI) 41.3 -50%
National Resource Partners L.P. (NRP) 10.04 -50%
SandRidge Mississippian Trust II (SDR) 4.5 -50%

Unsurprisingly, the vast majority of the stocks in this dubious list are energy-related. U.S. coal producers in particular have had a horrendous year, with many of them seemingly facing bankruptcy. You’ll also notice many MLPs in the list, which have been hammered amid the recent oil price plunge.

A couple of foreign stocks also stand out, namely Portugal Telecom (which can’t catch a break even though it’s on the verge of being acquired), and Arcos Dorados (which has been plagued by weak performance in its McDonald’s franchises, as well as negative effects from the stronger U.S. dollar).

Dishonorable mentions include SeaDrill (SDRL) and Herbalife (HLF), both of which suspended their payouts earlier this year.

Speaking of dividend suspensions, some of the stocks above are facing the possibility of eliminating their dividend programs in 2015. I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see stocks like WLT, CLF, ACI, and AUY suspend their dividends next year.

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