The shares of Williams Partners L.P. have increased by more than 22.61% this year alone. The shares recently went up by 0.87% or $0.41 and now trades at $47.55. The shares of JELD-WEN Holding, Inc. (NYSE:JELD), has slumped by -35.48% year to date as of 08/09/2018. The shares currently trade at $25.40 and have been able to report a change of -6.62% over the past one week.

The stock of Williams Partners L.P. and JELD-WEN Holding, 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: 25.51% versus 25.80%**

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 WPZ will grow it’s earning at a 25.51% annual rate in the next 5 years. This is in contrast to JELD which will have a positive growth at a 25.80% annual rate. This means that the higher growth rate of JELD 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. WPZ has an EBITDA margin of 45.26%, this implies that the underlying business of WPZ is more profitable. The ROI of WPZ is 2.70% while that of JELD is 9.10%. These figures suggest that JELD ventures generate a higher ROI than that of WPZ.

**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, WPZ’s free cash flow per share is a negative -19.98, while that of JELD is also a negative -2.37.

**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 WPZ is 0.80 and that of JELD is 2.00. This implies that it is easier for WPZ to cover its immediate obligations over the next 12 months than JELD. The debt ratio of WPZ is 0.79 compared to 1.73 for JELD. JELD can be able to settle its long-term debts and thus is a lower financial risk than WPZ.

**Valuation**

WPZ currently trades at a forward P/E of 24.43, a P/B of 2.16, and a P/S of 5.47 while JELD trades at a forward P/E of 9.96, a P/B of 3.16, and a P/S of 0.69. This means that looking at the earnings, book values and sales basis, WPZ 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 WPZ is currently at a 2.74% to its one-year price target of 46.28. Looking at its rival pricing, JELD is at a -25.29% relative to its price target of 34.00.

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), WPZ is given a 2.00 while 2.50 placed for JELD. This means that analysts are more bullish on the outlook for JELD 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 WPZ is 1.45 while that of JELD is just 6.08. This means that analysts are more bullish on the forecast for WPZ stock.

Conclusion

The stock of Williams Partners L.P. defeats that of JELD-WEN Holding, Inc. when the two are compared, with WPZ taking 5 out of the total factors that were been considered. WPZ 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, WPZ is the cheaper one on an earnings, book value and sales basis. Finally, the sentiment signal for WPZ is better on when it is viewed on short interest.