Telephone and Data Systems (NYSE: TDS) and Vodafone Group PLC (NASDAQ:VOD) are both mid-cap utilities companies, but which is the superior stock? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, profitability, valuation, risk, earnings, institutional ownership and dividends.

Risk & Volatility

Telephone and Data Systems has a beta of 1.04, meaning that its share price is 4% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Vodafone Group PLC has a beta of 0.52, meaning that its share price is 48% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Telephone and Data Systems and Vodafone Group PLC’s top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Telephone and Data Systems $5.04 billion 0.59 $934.00 million $0.48 56.46
Vodafone Group PLC $55.79 billion 1.36 $13.48 billion N/A N/A

Vodafone Group PLC has higher revenue and earnings than Telephone and Data Systems.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

82.5% of Telephone and Data Systems shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 10.2% of Vodafone Group PLC shares are owned by institutional investors. 17.3% of Telephone and Data Systems shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 1.0% of Vodafone Group PLC shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Dividends

Telephone and Data Systems pays an annual dividend of $0.62 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.3%. Vodafone Group PLC pays an annual dividend of $1.64 per share and has a dividend yield of 5.8%. Telephone and Data Systems pays out 129.2% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. Telephone and Data Systems has raised its dividend for 42 consecutive years.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and price targets for Telephone and Data Systems and Vodafone Group PLC, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Telephone and Data Systems 0 2 0 0 2.00
Vodafone Group PLC 1 4 7 1 2.62

Telephone and Data Systems presently has a consensus price target of $38.00, indicating a potential upside of 40.22%. Vodafone Group PLC has a consensus price target of $31.52, indicating a potential upside of 10.60%. Given Telephone and Data Systems’ higher probable upside, equities analysts plainly believe Telephone and Data Systems is more favorable than Vodafone Group PLC.

Profitability

This table compares Telephone and Data Systems and Vodafone Group PLC’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Telephone and Data Systems 1.09% 1.15% 0.58%
Vodafone Group PLC N/A N/A N/A

Telephone and Data Systems Company Profile

Telephone and Data Systems, Inc. is a diversified telecommunications company. The Company is engaged in conducting its Wireless operations through its subsidiary, United States Cellular Corporation (U.S. Cellular), as well as providing its wireline services, cable services, and hosted and managed services (HMS), through its subsidiary, TDS Telecommunications Corporation (TDS Telecom). It operates through four business segments: U.S. Cellular, Wireline, Cable, and Hosted and Managed Services. U.S. Cellular provides service to postpaid and prepaid customers. Wireline operations provide retail telecommunications services to both residential and commercial customers. Wireline offers services, including broadband, video, voice and network access services. Cable offers broadband, video and voice services under TDS and BendBroadband brand names. It provides a range of information technology (IT) services, including colocation, and cloud and hosting solutions through its HMS business.

Vodafone Group PLC Company Profile

Vodafone Group Plc (Vodafone) is a telecommunications company. The Company’s business is organized into two geographic regions: Europe, and Africa, Middle East and Asia Pacific (AMAP). Its segments include Europe and AMAP. Its Europe segment includes geographic regions, such as Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, Spain and Other Europe. The Other Europe includes the Netherlands, Portugal, Greece, Hungary and Romania, among others. Its AMAP segment includes India, South Africa, Tanzania, Mozambique, Lesotho, Africa, Turkey, Australia, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, New Zealand and Qatar, among others. The Company provides a range of services, including voice, messaging and data across mobile and fixed networks. The Company acquires spectrum and licenses to use radio frequencies that deliver mobile services. Its fixed capabilities include cable, fiber and copper networks to enable television, broadband and voice services.

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