Hibbett Sports (HIBB) versus Barnes & Noble (BKS) Head-To-Head Review

Hibbett Sports (NASDAQ: HIBB) and Barnes & Noble (NYSE:BKS) are both small-cap retail/wholesale companies, but which is the better stock? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their earnings, risk, valuation, institutional ownership, profitability, analyst recommendations and dividends.


Barnes & Noble pays an annual dividend of $0.60 per share and has a dividend yield of 11.7%. Hibbett Sports does not pay a dividend. Barnes & Noble pays out 139.5% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future.


This table compares Hibbett Sports and Barnes & Noble’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Hibbett Sports 3.62% 10.37% 7.29%
Barnes & Noble -3.19% 6.72% 1.79%

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Hibbett Sports and Barnes & Noble’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Hibbett Sports $968.22 million 0.56 $35.03 million $1.63 17.64
Barnes & Noble $3.89 billion 0.10 $22.02 million $0.43 11.98

Hibbett Sports has higher earnings, but lower revenue than Barnes & Noble. Barnes & Noble is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Hibbett Sports, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

67.4% of Barnes & Noble shares are held by institutional investors. 1.6% of Hibbett Sports shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 19.0% of Barnes & Noble shares are held by company 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.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current ratings for Hibbett Sports and Barnes & Noble, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Hibbett Sports 2 9 7 0 2.28
Barnes & Noble 0 1 0 0 2.00

Hibbett Sports currently has a consensus target price of $21.58, suggesting a potential downside of 24.95%. Given Hibbett Sports’ stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, research analysts clearly believe Hibbett Sports is more favorable than Barnes & Noble.

Volatility and Risk

Hibbett Sports has a beta of 0.83, meaning that its stock price is 17% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Barnes & Noble has a beta of 2.11, meaning that its stock price is 111% more volatile than the S&P 500.


Hibbett Sports beats Barnes & Noble on 11 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

Hibbett Sports Company Profile

Hibbett Sports, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, operates athletic specialty stores. Its stores offer a range of merchandise, including athletic footwear, athletic and fashion apparel, sports equipment, and related accessories. The company also operates Hibbett.com, an e-commerce Website. As of March 28, 2018, it operated approximately 1,000 stores primarily in small and mid-sized communities in the United States. Hibbett Sports, Inc. was founded in 1945 and is headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama.

Barnes & Noble Company Profile

Barnes & Noble, Inc. operates as a content and commerce company in the United States. Barnes & Noble, Inc. operates as a retailer of books, content, digital media, and educational products. It sells trade books, including hardcover and paperback titles; mass market paperbacks, such as mystery, romance, science fiction, and other fiction; and children's books, eBooks and other digital content, NOOK and related accessories, bargain books, magazines, gifts, café products and services, educational toys and games, and music and movies. The company also offers a suite of new, used, and digital textbooks, as well as textbooks rentals. As of June 22, 2017, it operated through 633 Barnes & Noble bookstores in 50 states, as well as BN.com, nook.com, and barnesandnoble.com Websites. The company was founded in 1986 and is based in New York, New York.

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