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Arlington Asset Investment Corp (AI), Two Harbors Investment Corp (TWO): This High-Yielding REIT Has Soared Along With the Housing Market

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Arlington Asset Investment Corp (NYSE:AI)If you are a dividend investor, Arlington Asset Investment Corp (NYSE:AI) should be on your radar. This company has consistently paid dividends since 2003, and currently yields a whopping 14%. On top of that, its shares are also doing well, gaining an astounding 26.9% growth this year.

Arlington Asset Investment Corp (NYSE:AI) is a small-cap investment firm with a market capitalization of $425.34 million. The company specializes in the acquisition of residential mortgage-backed securities secured either by U.S. government agencies or by U.S. government-sponsored entities as to principal and interest. It also has several mortgage-backed securities issued by private organizations in its portfolio.

Investment profile

The firm’s investment portfolio mainly consists of Agency mortgage-backed securities (MBS) with a fair value $1.8 billion, and private-label MBS worth $328.9 million as of June 30, 2013. The combined value of the company’s MBS portfolio is approximately $2.1 billion.

J.Rock Tonkel Jr, President and Chief Operating Officer of Arlington Asset Investment Corp (NYSE:AI), stated that the strong second quarter performance with increased net interest income of $4.2 million for the quarter was very encouraging given that the period was rocked with volatility in interest rates and instability in interest rate-sensitive securities. This is also a reflection of the company’s relatively stable financials. Its hybrid portfolio is founded on a strong and highly-efficient structure that is designed to create both strong current returns and growth. Consequently, management remains optimistic on the future investment opportunities ahead in the midst of a normalized monetary policy and economy.

Arlington Asset Investment versus its peers

Aside from Arlington Asset Investment Corp (NYSE:AI), there are also other firms with attractive yield for good dividend investing. One of them is Two Harbors Investment Corp (NYSE:TWO), which is a hybrid REIT with a relatively attractive yield of 12.35%. Two Harbors Investment Corp (NYSE:TWO) is primarily engaged in investing in and financing residential mortgage-backed securities.

Two Harbors Investment Corp (NYSE:TWO) is undervalued at $10 per share, considering that the company is a well-managed hybrid REIT with an efficient investing strategy. It has a good track record of investing in varied asset classes and in alternative MBS. During the first quarter, the firm was also able to secure approval from Freddie Mac to make one of its wholly-owned subsidiaries a servicer in Two Harbors Investment Corp (NYSE:TWO)’ home mortgage program. This will enable the company to invest in MSRs on mortgage loans, with Freddie Mac as the guarantor.

Another close competitor is MFA Financial, Inc. (NYSE:MFA), which currently yields 10.88% with year-to-date growth in shares of 5.69%. MFA Financial, Inc. (NYSE:MFA) primarily focuses on investing in residential Agency MBS and Non-Agency MBS.

MFA Financial, Inc. (NYSE:MFA) has quite attractive carry, with limited interest rate risk. It is maintaining an Agency MBS portfolio in excess of $7 billion. It also owns Non-Agency MBS with approximate market value of $5.4 billion against face value of $6.3 billion that generated 6.8% loss-adjusted yield during the first quarter, on an unlevered basis. 

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