Rice Energy (RICE) versus Unit (UNT) Financial Contrast

Rice Energy (NYSE: RICE) and Unit (NYSE:UNT) are both energy companies, but which is the superior business? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their valuation, institutional ownership, analyst recommendations, dividends, profitability, risk and earnings.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current recommendations for Rice Energy and Unit, as provided by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Rice Energy 0 18 5 0 2.22
Unit 0 3 2 0 2.40

Rice Energy presently has a consensus price target of $27.58, indicating a potential downside of 5.92%. Unit has a consensus price target of $25.00, indicating a potential upside of 0.44%. Given Unit’s stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Unit is more favorable than Rice Energy.

Volatility and Risk

Rice Energy has a beta of 1.57, indicating that its share price is 57% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Unit has a beta of 2.9, indicating that its share price is 190% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Profitability

This table compares Rice Energy and Unit’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Rice Energy 12.25% -13.19% 2.20%
Unit 4.28% 2.33% 1.14%

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Rice Energy and Unit’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Rice Energy $778.91 million 8.58 -$269.75 million ($1.24) -23.65
Unit $602.18 million 2.19 -$135.62 million $0.58 42.91

Unit has lower revenue, but higher earnings than Rice Energy. Rice Energy is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Unit, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

87.2% of Rice Energy shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 95.2% of Unit shares are held by institutional investors. 1.7% of Rice Energy shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 3.3% of Unit shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Summary

Unit beats Rice Energy on 9 of the 14 factors compared between the two stocks.

Rice Energy Company Profile

Rice Energy Inc. (Rice Energy) is an independent natural gas and oil company. The Company is engaged in the acquisition, exploration and development of natural gas, oil and natural gas liquids (NGL) properties in the Appalachian Basin. The Company conducts its operations through two segments: Exploration and Production, and Midstream. The Exploration and Production segment is engaged in the acquisition, exploration and development of natural gas, oil and NGLs. The Exploration and Production segment operates in the cores of the Marcellus and Utica Shales. The Company controls approximately 231,000 net acres in the Marcellus and Ohio Utica Shale cores. It operates approximately 1,164 drilling locations. The Midstream segment is engaged in the gathering and compression of natural gas, oil and NGL production of, and in the provision of water services to support the well completion activities of, Rice Energy and third parties.

Unit Company Profile

Unit Corporation is an oil and natural gas contract drilling company. The Company has operations in the exploration and production and mid-stream areas. The Company operates through three segments: Oil and Natural Gas, Contract Drilling and Mid-Stream. It is primarily engaged in the exploration, development, acquisition, and production of oil and natural gas properties, the land contract drilling of natural gas and oil wells, and the buying, selling, gathering, processing and treating of natural gas. Its Oil and Natural Gas operations are carried out by its subsidiary Unit Petroleum Company. Contract Drilling operations are carried out by its subsidiary Unit Drilling Company. Its drills onshore oil and natural gas wells for its own account, as well as for other oil and natural gas companies. Its Mid-Stream operations are carried out by its subsidiary Superior Pipeline Company, L.L.C. Its mid-stream operations consist of buying, selling, gathering, processing and treating natural gas.

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