J.B. Hunt Transport Services (NASDAQ: JBHT) and Old Dominion Freight Line (NASDAQ:ODFL) are both mid-cap transportation companies, but which is the better stock? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their dividends, risk, earnings, analyst recommendations, valuation, institutional ownership and profitabiliy.

Profitability

This table compares J.B. Hunt Transport Services and Old Dominion Freight Line’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
J.B. Hunt Transport Services 6.54% 30.67% 11.33%
Old Dominion Freight Line 9.92% 16.52% 11.17%

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares J.B. Hunt Transport Services and Old Dominion Freight Line’s top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
J.B. Hunt Transport Services $6.66 billion 1.43 $1.07 billion $3.86 22.48
Old Dominion Freight Line $3.04 billion 2.50 $687.79 million $3.64 25.31

J.B. Hunt Transport Services has higher revenue and earnings than Old Dominion Freight Line. J.B. Hunt Transport Services is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Old Dominion Freight Line, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Dividends

J.B. Hunt Transport Services pays an annual dividend of $0.92 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.1%. Old Dominion Freight Line pays an annual dividend of $0.40 per share and has a dividend yield of 0.4%. J.B. Hunt Transport Services pays out 23.8% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Old Dominion Freight Line pays out 11.0% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Both companies have healthy payout ratios and should be able to cover their dividend payments with earnings for the next several years. J.B. Hunt Transport Services has increased its dividend for 13 consecutive years. J.B. Hunt Transport Services is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and longer track record of dividend growth.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent recommendations and price targets for J.B. Hunt Transport Services and Old Dominion Freight Line, as provided by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
J.B. Hunt Transport Services 0 6 9 0 2.60
Old Dominion Freight Line 0 3 3 1 2.71

J.B. Hunt Transport Services presently has a consensus target price of $97.00, indicating a potential upside of 11.78%. Old Dominion Freight Line has a consensus target price of $93.86, indicating a potential upside of 1.86%. Given J.B. Hunt Transport Services’ higher probable upside, equities analysts plainly believe J.B. Hunt Transport Services is more favorable than Old Dominion Freight Line.

Risk and Volatility

J.B. Hunt Transport Services has a beta of 0.95, suggesting that its stock price is 5% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Old Dominion Freight Line has a beta of 1.05, suggesting that its stock price is 5% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

73.2% of J.B. Hunt Transport Services shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 75.0% of Old Dominion Freight Line shares are held by institutional investors. 4.3% of J.B. Hunt Transport Services shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 14.6% of Old Dominion Freight Line shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, large money managers and endowments believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

About J.B. Hunt Transport Services

J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Inc. is a surface transportation, delivery, and logistics company in North America. The Company segments include Intermodal (JBI), Dedicated Contract Services (DCS), Integrated Capacity Solutions (ICS) and Truck (JBT). The Company, through its subsidiaries, provides transportation and delivery services to a range of customers and consumers throughout the continental United States, Canada and Mexico. The JBI segment draws on the intermodal services of rail carriers for the underlying linehaul movement of its equipment between rail ramps. Its DCS segment focuses on private fleet conversion and creation in replenishment, specialized equipment and final-mile delivery services. Its ICS segment provides traditional freight brokerage and transportation logistics solutions to customers through relationships with third-party carriers and integration. Its JBT segment offers full-load, dry-van freight, utilizing tractors operating over roads and highways.

About Old Dominion Freight Line

Old Dominion Freight Line, Inc. is a union-free motor carrier providing regional, inter-regional and national less-than-truckload (LTL) services. The Company’s LTL services include ground and air expedited transportation for time-sensitive shipments, consumer household pickup and delivery and freight delivery services throughout North America. In addition to its LTL services, the Company offers a range of other value-added services that include container drayage, truckload brokerage, supply chain consulting and warehousing. As of December 31, 2016, the Company operated 226 service center locations, of which it owned 182 and leased 44. As of December 31, 2016, its network included 10 breakbulk facilities located in Rialto, California; Atlanta, Georgia; Columbus, Ohio; Indianapolis, Indiana; Greensboro, North Carolina; Harrisburg, Pennsylvania; Memphis and Morristown, Tennessee; Dallas, Texas, and Salt Lake City, Utah. As of December 31, 2016, the Company owned 7,994 tractors.

Receive News & Ratings for J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc. Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc. and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.