Even though the FTSE 350 has increased in value by 8% in the last six months, there are still opportunities for income investors to buy high-yield shares. Of course, this opportunity may not last for all that long. Inflation has moved higher since last year's EU referendum and is forecast to continue with its upward trend. As such, these two higher-yielding stocks could see their prices rise, and may even help you retire early.
An impressive performance
UK and European industrial property specialist Hansteen(LSE: HSTN) reported upbeat results for 2016 on Monday, as well as the disposal of its Dutch operations for EUR1.28bn. Its results showed that the company has made encouraging progress despite a somewhat uncertain market. Its net asset value per share increased by 15.9%, while normalised total profit moved 4.4% higher. This was enough to convince the company to raise dividends for the full year by 12.4%, which indicates that management has confidence in the company's future.
Hansteen currently yields 4.8% from a dividend which is covered 1.3 times by profit. This indicates that its shareholder payouts are relatively sustainable at their current level. Furthermore, given the lack of requirement for excess capital within a real estate investment trust (REIT), it could even be argued that Hansteen may be able to increase its payout ratio in future without putting its finances under severe strain. When coupled with a forecast rise in earnings of 4% in 2018, this indicates a higher dividend may be on the cards.
While Hansteen's price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio of 16.5 may not be particularly low, given its income potential it appears to be rather attractive. In fact, a number of property companies trade on higher ratings than Hansteen, which means a rising share price could be ahead.
While the outlook for UK property prices has become rather uncertain since the EU referendum, recent figures suggest the market is stabilising. For example, on Monday data from Rightmove suggested house prices were moving higher, while UK GDP growth continues to perform much better than was previously anticipated. This is good news for commercial property specialist Land Securities(LSE: LAND). Its dividend yield of 3.7% may not be the highest on offer, but an improving property market and economy could mean rapid dividend growth.
For example, even with a somewhat lacklustre and uncertain future for the UK economy already forecast, Land Securities is expected to record a rise in its earnings of 6% this year and 4% next year. As such, there could be scope for an upgrade to its outlook. And since dividends are currently covered 1.3 times by profit, dividend growth could match or even overtake profit growth in the medium term.
With Land Securities trading on a price-to-book (P/B) ratio of 0.7, its shares appear to offer excellent value for money. In fact, they could rise by almost 50% and still trade close to their net asset value. As such, they could be worth buying and may bring you a step closer to retirement.
Of course, Land Securities and Hansteen aren't the only companies that could help you retire early. With that in mind, the analysts at The Motley Fool have written a free and without obligation guide called Five Shares You Can Retire On.
The five companies in question offer stunning dividend yields, have fantastic long-term potential, and trade at very appealing valuations. As such, they could deliver excellent returns and help to bring your retirement date a little closer.
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Peter Stephens owns shares of Land Securities Group. The Motley Fool UK has recommended Hansteen Holdings. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.