Earnings

Which is more compelling pick right now? – News Corporation (NWSA), Okta, Inc. (OKTA)

The shares of News Corporation have decreased by more than -5.86% this year alone. The shares recently went up by 0.79% or $0.12 and now trades at $15.26. The shares of Okta, Inc. (NASDAQ:OKTA), has jumped by 121.44% year to date as of 08/09/2018. The shares currently trade at $56.71 and have been able to report a change of 3.88% over the past one week.

The stock of News Corporation and Okta, 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.

Next 5Y EPS Growth: 24.12% versus 20.00%

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 NWSA will grow it’s earning at a 24.12% annual rate in the next 5 years. This is in contrast to OKTA which will have a positive growth at a 20.00% annual rate. This means that the higher growth rate of NWSA 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. NWSA has an EBITDA margin of 27.16%, this implies that the underlying business of NWSA is more profitable. The ROI of NWSA is -5.80% while that of OKTA is -58.20%. These figures suggest that NWSA ventures generate a higher ROI than that of OKTA.

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, NWSA’s free cash flow per share is a positive 2.08.

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 NWSA is 1.60 and that of OKTA is 3.10. This implies that it is easier for NWSA to cover its immediate obligations over the next 12 months than OKTA. The debt ratio of NWSA is 0.03 compared to 1.04 for OKTA. OKTA can be able to settle its long-term debts and thus is a lower financial risk than NWSA.

Valuation

NWSA currently trades at a forward P/E of 35.57, a P/B of 0.92, and a P/S of 1.06 while OKTA trades at a P/B of 23.63, and a P/S of 20.44. This means that looking at the earnings, book values and sales basis, NWSA 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 NWSA is currently at a -11.02% to its one-year price target of 17.15. Looking at its rival pricing, OKTA is at a -7.18% relative to its price target of 61.10.

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), NWSA is given a 2.70 while 1.80 placed for OKTA. This means that analysts are more bullish on the outlook for NWSA 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 NWSA is 4.36 while that of OKTA is just 2.86. This means that analysts are more bullish on the forecast for OKTA stock.

Conclusion

The stock of Okta, Inc. defeats that of News Corporation when the two are compared, with OKTA taking 5 out of the total factors that were been considered. OKTA 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, OKTA is the cheaper one on an earnings, book value and sales basis. Finally, the sentiment signal for OKTA is better on when it is viewed on short interest.

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