Lincoln National Corporation (NYSE: LNC) and Athene Holding (NYSE:ATH) are both mid-cap finance companies, but which is the superior business? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their profitabiliy, dividends, analyst recommendations, earnings, risk, valuation and institutional ownership.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

80.2% of Lincoln National Corporation shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 39.0% of Athene Holding shares are held by institutional investors. 1.4% of Lincoln National Corporation shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 10.6% of Athene Holding shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Dividends

Lincoln National Corporation pays an annual dividend of $1.16 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.7%. Athene Holding does not pay a dividend. Lincoln National Corporation pays out 19.1% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Lincoln National Corporation has raised its dividend for 6 consecutive years.

Profitability

This table compares Lincoln National Corporation and Athene Holding’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Lincoln National Corporation 10.43% 10.70% 0.62%
Athene Holding N/A N/A N/A

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Lincoln National Corporation and Athene Holding’s top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Lincoln National Corporation $13.53 billion 1.14 $1.99 billion $6.06 11.32
Athene Holding $5.00 billion 1.98 N/A N/A N/A

Lincoln National Corporation has higher revenue and earnings than Athene Holding.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of recent recommendations for Lincoln National Corporation and Athene Holding, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Lincoln National Corporation 0 6 5 0 2.45
Athene Holding 0 6 9 0 2.60

Lincoln National Corporation currently has a consensus price target of $67.09, suggesting a potential downside of 2.20%. Athene Holding has a consensus price target of $55.25, suggesting a potential upside of 11.66%. Given Athene Holding’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Athene Holding is more favorable than Lincoln National Corporation.

Summary

Lincoln National Corporation beats Athene Holding on 8 of the 14 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Lincoln National Corporation

Lincoln National Corporation is a holding company, which operates insurance and retirement businesses through subsidiary companies. The Company sells a range of wealth protection, accumulation and retirement income products and solutions, through its business segments. The Company operates through four segments: Annuities segment, which offers fixed (including indexed) and variable annuities; Retirement Plan Services segment, which provides employers with retirement plan products and services; Life Insurance segment, which focuses on the creation and protection of wealth through life insurance products, and Group Protection, which offers principally group non-medical insurance products. These products include fixed and indexed annuities, variable annuities, universal life insurance, variable universal life insurance, linked-benefit UL, term life insurance, indexed universal life insurance, employer-sponsored retirement plans and services, and group life, disability and dental.

About Athene Holding

Athene Holding Ltd. is an insurance holding company. The Company’s segments include Retirement Services, Corporate and Other. Retirement Services segment consists of the United States and Bermuda operations, which issue and reinsure retirement savings products and institutional products. Retirement Services has retail operations, which provide annuity retirement solutions to its policyholders. Retirement Services has reinsurance operations, which reinsure multi-year guaranteed annuities, fixed indexed annuities, traditional one year guarantee fixed deferred annuities, immediate annuities and institutional products from its reinsurance partners. It offers two product lines: annuities and funding agreements. It offers deferred and immediate annuities, which are focused on the needs and objectives of people preparing for, approaching or living in retirement. It focuses on issuing funding agreements to institutional investors. Its life and other products include other retail products.

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