The shares of Mylan N.V. have decreased by more than -13.47% this year alone. The shares recently went down by -6.68% or -$2.62 and now trades at $36.61. The shares of Mastercard Incorporated (NYSE:MA), has jumped by 34.51% year to date as of 08/09/2018. The shares currently trade at $203.60 and have been able to report a change of 0.79% over the past one week.

The stock of Mylan N.V. and Mastercard Incorporated 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.

**Next 5Y EPS Growth: 8.57% versus 22.59%**

When a company is able to grow consistently in terms of earnings at a high compound rate have the highest likelihood of creating value for its shareholders over time. Analysts have predicted that MYL will grow it’s earning at a 8.57% annual rate in the next 5 years. This is in contrast to MA which will have a positive growth at a 22.59% annual rate. This means that the higher growth rate of MA implies a greater potential for capital appreciation over the years.

**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. MYL has an EBITDA margin of 35.27%, this implies that the underlying business of MYL is more profitable. The ROI of MYL is 4.80% while that of MA is 44.00%. These figures suggest that MA ventures generate a higher ROI than that of MYL.

**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, MYL’s free cash flow per share is a positive 4.94, while that of MA is positive 8.65.

**Liquidity and Financial Risk**

The ability of a company to meet up with its short-term obligations and be able to clear its longer-term debts is measured using Liquidity and leverage ratios. The current ratio for MYL is 1.10 and that of MA is 1.50. This implies that it is easier for MYL to cover its immediate obligations over the next 12 months than MA. The debt ratio of MYL is 1.15 compared to 1.11 for MA. MYL can be able to settle its long-term debts and thus is a lower financial risk than MA.

**Valuation**

MYL currently trades at a forward P/E of 6.27, a P/B of 1.43, and a P/S of 1.55 while MA trades at a forward P/E of 27.21, a P/B of 40.40, and a P/S of 15.24. This means that looking at the earnings, book values and sales basis, MYL 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 MYL is currently at a -24.89% to its one-year price target of 48.74. Looking at its rival pricing, MA is at a -11.19% relative to its price target of 229.25.

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), MYL is given a 2.10 while 1.70 placed for MA. This means that analysts are more bullish on the outlook for MYL 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 MYL is 2.58 while that of MA is just 2.18. This means that analysts are more bullish on the forecast for MA stock.

Conclusion

The stock of Mylan N.V. defeats that of Mastercard Incorporated when the two are compared, with MYL taking 6 out of the total factors that were been considered. MYL 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, MYL is the cheaper one on an earnings, book value and sales basis. Finally, the sentiment signal for MYL is better on when it is viewed on short interest.