HCA Holdings (NYSE: HCA) and Surgical Care Affiliates (NASDAQ:SCAI) are both medical companies, but which is the better business? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their institutional ownership, profitabiliy, valuation, analyst recommendations, dividends, earnings and risk.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and recommmendations for HCA Holdings and Surgical Care Affiliates, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
HCA Holdings 0 4 13 0 2.76
Surgical Care Affiliates 0 3 0 0 2.00

HCA Holdings presently has a consensus price target of $92.44, suggesting a potential upside of 8.46%. Surgical Care Affiliates has a consensus price target of $49.50, suggesting a potential downside of 11.40%. Given HCA Holdings’ stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, equities analysts clearly believe HCA Holdings is more favorable than Surgical Care Affiliates.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares HCA Holdings and Surgical Care Affiliates’ top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
HCA Holdings $41.85 billion 0.75 $8.17 billion $7.37 11.56
Surgical Care Affiliates N/A N/A N/A $0.55 101.58

HCA Holdings has higher revenue and earnings than Surgical Care Affiliates. HCA Holdings is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Surgical Care Affiliates, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Volatility & Risk

HCA Holdings has a beta of 0.69, suggesting that its share price is 31% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Surgical Care Affiliates has a beta of 0.58, suggesting that its share price is 42% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Institutional and Insider Ownership

74.5% of HCA Holdings shares are held by institutional investors. 2.9% of HCA Holdings shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 3.3% of Surgical Care Affiliates shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Profitability

This table compares HCA Holdings and Surgical Care Affiliates’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
HCA Holdings 6.70% -45.28% 8.00%
Surgical Care Affiliates 21.52% 13.07% 12.83%

Summary

HCA Holdings beats Surgical Care Affiliates on 7 of the 11 factors compared between the two stocks.

About HCA Holdings

HCA Healthcare, Inc., formerly HCA Holdings, Inc., is a holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries, owns and operates hospitals and related healthcare entities. As of December 31, 2016, the Company operated in two geographically organized groups, including the National and American Groups. As of December 31, 2016, the National Group included 84 hospitals, which were located in Alaska, California, Florida, southern Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, northern Kentucky, Nevada, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Utah and Virginia. As of December 31, 2016, the American Group included 80 hospitals, which were located in Colorado, northern Georgia, Kansas, southern Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Texas. As of December 31, 2016, the Company operated six hospitals in England. The Company owns, manages or operates hospitals, freestanding surgery centers and freestanding emergency care facilities, walk-in clinics, diagnostic and imaging centers, among others.

About Surgical Care Affiliates

Surgical Care Affiliates, Inc. is a provider of solutions to physicians, health plans and health systems to optimize surgical care. The Company offers tools and systems in the areas of clinical benchmarking, clinical best practices, operating efficiency, care coordination and supply chain management. As of December 31, 2016, the Company operated a network of surgical facilities in the United States, which included 197 ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs) and seven surgical hospitals in partnership with approximately 3,000 physician partners. The Company’s operations consist of its ownership and management of ASCs and surgical hospitals. Its ASCs provide the facilities, equipment, supplies and clinical support staff necessary to provide non-emergency surgical services to patients not requiring hospitalization. Its surgical hospitals allow physicians to perform a range of surgical procedures, including surgeries, and allow patients to stay in the hospital for several nights to recover.

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