Baidu (NASDAQ: BIDU) and Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL) are both large-cap computer and technology companies, but which is the better stock? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their institutional ownership, analyst recommendations, profitabiliy, risk, dividends, earnings and valuation.

Volatility and Risk

Baidu has a beta of 1.91, suggesting that its share price is 91% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Alphabet has a beta of 1, suggesting that its share price has a similar volatility profile to the S&P 500.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of recent ratings and target prices for Baidu and Alphabet, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Baidu 2 12 8 0 2.27
Alphabet 1 6 38 0 2.82

Baidu presently has a consensus target price of $186.89, suggesting a potential downside of 1.38%. Alphabet has a consensus target price of $1,019.92, suggesting a potential upside of 3.34%. Given Alphabet’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Alphabet is more favorable than Baidu.

Profitability

This table compares Baidu and Alphabet’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Baidu 15.92% 12.27% 6.31%
Alphabet 21.84% 15.16% 12.65%

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Baidu and Alphabet’s revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Baidu $10.55 billion 6.23 $2.80 billion $4.64 40.84
Alphabet $94.77 billion 7.20 $31.21 billion $29.54 33.41

Alphabet has higher revenue and earnings than Baidu. Alphabet is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Baidu, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Institutional and Insider Ownership

64.4% of Baidu shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 34.3% of Alphabet shares are owned by institutional investors. 13.2% of Alphabet shares are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, hedge funds and endowments believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Summary

Alphabet beats Baidu on 11 of the 14 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Baidu

Baidu, Inc. is a Chinese language Internet search provider. The Company offers a Chinese language search platform on its Baidu.com Website that enables users to find information online, including Webpages, news, images, documents and multimedia files, through links provided on its Website. In addition to serving individual Internet search users, the Company provides a platform for businesses to reach customers. Its business consists of three segments: search services, transaction services and iQiyi. Search services are keyword-based marketing services targeted at and triggered by Internet users’ search queries, which mainly include its pay-for-performance (P4P) services and other online marketing services. Its transaction services include Baidu Nuomi, Baidu Takeout Delivery, Baidu Maps, Baidu Connect, Baidu Wallet and others. iQiyi is an online video platform with a content library that includes licensed movies, television series, cartoons, variety shows and other programs.

About Alphabet

Alphabet Inc. is a holding company. The Company’s businesses include Google Inc. (Google) and its Internet products, such as Access, Calico, CapitalG, GV, Nest, Verily, Waymo and X. The Company’s segments include Google and Other Bets. The Google segment includes its Internet products, such as Search, Ads, Commerce, Maps, YouTube, Google Cloud, Android, Chrome and Google Play, as well as its hardware initiatives. The Google segment is engaged in advertising, sales of digital content, applications and cloud offerings, and sales of hardware products. The Other Bets segment is engaged in the sales of Internet and television services through Google Fiber, sales of Nest products and services, and licensing and research and development (R&D) services through Verily. It offers Google Assistant, which allows users to type or talk with Google; Google Maps, which helps users navigate to a store, and Google Photos, which helps users store and organize all of their photos.

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