WEC Energy Group (NYSE: WEC) and Atlantica Yield PLC (NASDAQ:ABY) are both utilities companies, but which is the superior business? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their institutional ownership, earnings, dividends, analyst recommendations, valuation, risk and profitability.
Insider & Institutional Ownership
70.2% of WEC Energy Group shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 47.8% of Atlantica Yield PLC shares are held by institutional investors. 1.0% of WEC Energy Group shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, hedge funds and large money managers believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.
WEC Energy Group pays an annual dividend of $2.08 per share and has a dividend yield of 3.3%. Atlantica Yield PLC pays an annual dividend of $1.04 per share and has a dividend yield of 5.2%. WEC Energy Group pays out 68.4% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Atlantica Yield PLC pays out 346.7% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. WEC Energy Group has increased its dividend for 6 consecutive years.
Earnings and Valuation
This table compares WEC Energy Group and Atlantica Yield PLC’s top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.
|Gross Revenue||Price/Sales Ratio||EBITDA||Earnings Per Share||Price/Earnings Ratio|
|WEC Energy Group||$7.61 billion||2.64||$2.51 billion||$3.04||20.92|
|Atlantica Yield PLC||$1.00 billion||2.00||$697.25 million||$0.30||66.40|
WEC Energy Group has higher revenue and earnings than Atlantica Yield PLC. WEC Energy Group is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Atlantica Yield PLC, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.
Risk & Volatility
WEC Energy Group has a beta of 0.12, indicating that its stock price is 88% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Atlantica Yield PLC has a beta of 1.12, indicating that its stock price is 12% more volatile than the S&P 500.
This table compares WEC Energy Group and Atlantica Yield PLC’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.
|Net Margins||Return on Equity||Return on Assets|
|WEC Energy Group||12.72%||10.75%||3.23%|
|Atlantica Yield PLC||3.15%||1.58%||0.30%|
This is a breakdown of current recommendations for WEC Energy Group and Atlantica Yield PLC, as reported by MarketBeat.
|Sell Ratings||Hold Ratings||Buy Ratings||Strong Buy Ratings||Rating Score|
|WEC Energy Group||1||5||1||0||2.00|
|Atlantica Yield PLC||0||1||2||0||2.67|
WEC Energy Group presently has a consensus price target of $62.50, suggesting a potential downside of 1.75%. Atlantica Yield PLC has a consensus price target of $22.33, suggesting a potential upside of 12.12%. Given Atlantica Yield PLC’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Atlantica Yield PLC is more favorable than WEC Energy Group.
WEC Energy Group beats Atlantica Yield PLC on 11 of the 17 factors compared between the two stocks.
About WEC Energy Group
WEC Energy Group, Inc. was a diversified holding company with natural gas and electric utility operations, an approximately 60% equity ownership interest in American Transmission Company LLC, and non-utility electric operations through its We Power business, as of December 31, 2016. Its segments include Wisconsin; Illinois; Other States; Electric Transmission; We Power, and Corporate and Other. Wisconsin includes the electric and natural gas utility operations of Wisconsin Electric Power Company, Wisconsin Gas LLC, and Wisconsin Public Service Corporation, including WE’s and WPS’s electric and natural gas operations in the state of Michigan. Illinois includes the natural gas utility and non-utility operations of The Peoples Gas Light and Coke Company and North Shore Gas Company. Other states includes the natural gas utility and non-utility operations of Minnesota Energy Resources Corporation and Michigan Gas Utilities Corporation.
About Atlantica Yield PLC
Atlantica Yield plc, formerly Abengoa Yield plc, is a total return company. The Company owns, manages, and acquires renewable energy, conventional power, electric transmission lines and water assets, focused on North America (the United States and Mexico), South America (Peru, Chile, Brazil and Uruguay) and Europe, Middle East and Africa (Spain, Algeria and South Africa). Its segments include North America, South America and EMEA. It operates in business sectors, including renewable energy, conventional power, electric transmission lines and water. As of December 31, 2016, it owned or had interests in 21 assets, comprising 1,442 megawatt (MW) of renewable energy generation, 300 MW of conventional power generation, 1,099 miles of electric transmission lines, as well as an exchangeable preferred equity investment in Abengoa Concessoes Brasil Holding S.A., (ACBH). The renewable energy sector includes its activities related to the production electricity from solar power and wind plants.
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