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Financial Metrics You Should Care About: Alamos Gold Inc. (AGI), Cloud Peak Energy Inc. (CLD)

The shares of Alamos Gold Inc. have decreased by more than -9.52% this year alone. The shares recently went down by -6.95% or -$0.44 and now trades at $5.89. The shares of Cloud Peak Energy Inc. (NYSE:CLD), has jumped by 23.60% year to date as of 01/11/2018. The shares currently trade at $5.50 and have been able to report a change of 12.24% over the past one week.

The stock of Alamos Gold Inc. and Cloud Peak Energy Inc. were two of the most active stocks on Thursday. Investors seem to be very interested in what happens to the stocks of these two companies but do investors favor one over the other? We will analyze the growth, profitability, risk, valuation, and insider trends of both companies and see which one investors prefer.

Profitability and Returns

Growth alone cannot be used to see if the company will be valuable. Shareholders will be the losers if a company invest in ventures that aren’t profitable enough to support upbeat growth. In order for us to accurately measure profitability and return, we will be using the EBITDA margin and Return on Investment (ROI), which balances the difference in capital structure. AGI has an EBITDA margin of 19.83%, this implies that the underlying business of AGI is more profitable. These figures suggest that CLD ventures generate a higher ROI than that of AGI.



Cash Flow 

The value of a stock is ultimately determined by the amount of cash flow that the investors have available. Over the last 12 months, AGI’s free cash flow per share is a positive 0.

Valuation




AGI currently trades at a forward P/E of 23.56, a P/B of 0.86, and a P/S of 3.45 while CLD trades at a P/B of 0.42, and a P/S of 0.46. This means that looking at the earnings, book values and sales basis, AGI is the cheaper one. It is very obvious that earnings are the most important factors to investors, thus analysts are most likely to place their bet on the P/E.

Analyst Price Targets and Opinions

The mistake some people make is that they think a cheap stock has more value to it. In order to know the value of a stock, there is need to compare its current price to its likely trading price in the future. The price of AGI is currently at a -35.77% to its one-year price target of 9.17. Looking at its rival pricing, CLD is at a 25% relative to its price target of 4.40. This figure implies that over the next one year, CLD is a better investment.

When looking at the investment recommendation on say a scale of 1 to 5 (1 being a strong buy, 3 a hold, and 5 a sell), AGI is given a 2.30 while 2.80 placed for CLD. This means that analysts are more bullish on the outlook for CLD stocks.

Insider Activity and Investor Sentiment

Short interest or otherwise called the percentage of a stock’s tradable shares currently being shorted is another data that investors use to get a handle on sentiment. The short ratio for AGI is 2.18 while that of CLD is just 2.43. This means that analysts are more bullish on the forecast for AGI stock.

Conclusion

The stock of Alamos Gold Inc. defeats that of Cloud Peak Energy Inc. when the two are compared, with AGI taking 6 out of the total factors that were been considered. AGI happens to be more profitable, generates a higher ROI, has higher cash flow per share, higher liquidity and has a lower financial risk. When looking at the stock valuation, AGI is the cheaper one on an earnings, book value and sales basis. Finally, the sentiment signal for AGI is better on when it is viewed on short interest.

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