Nabors Industries (NYSE: NBR) and Helmerich & Payne (NYSE:HP) are both mid-cap oils/energy companies, but which is the superior stock? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their institutional ownership, dividends, profitability, analyst recommendations, valuation, earnings and risk.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of current recommendations for Nabors Industries and Helmerich & Payne, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Nabors Industries 0 7 18 0 2.72
Helmerich & Payne 7 11 4 0 1.86

Nabors Industries presently has a consensus target price of $13.14, indicating a potential upside of 76.65%. Helmerich & Payne has a consensus target price of $56.37, indicating a potential upside of 12.31%. Given Nabors Industries’ stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, research analysts plainly believe Nabors Industries is more favorable than Helmerich & Payne.

Risk & Volatility

Nabors Industries has a beta of 1.57, meaning that its share price is 57% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Helmerich & Payne has a beta of 1.2, meaning that its share price is 20% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Dividends

Nabors Industries pays an annual dividend of $0.24 per share and has a dividend yield of 3.2%. Helmerich & Payne pays an annual dividend of $2.80 per share and has a dividend yield of 5.6%. Nabors Industries pays out -9.4% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Helmerich & Payne pays out -167.7% 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. Nabors Industries has increased its dividend for 44 consecutive years and Helmerich & Payne has increased its dividend for 3 consecutive years. Helmerich & Payne is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and lower payout ratio.

Institutional and Insider Ownership

95.6% of Nabors Industries shares are held by institutional investors. 4.1% of Nabors Industries shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 3.9% of Helmerich & Payne shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, large money managers and endowments believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Nabors Industries and Helmerich & Payne’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Nabors Industries $2.25 billion 0.95 $535.84 million ($2.55) -2.92
Helmerich & Payne $1.60 billion 3.41 $373.98 million ($1.67) -30.05

Nabors Industries has higher revenue and earnings than Helmerich & Payne. Helmerich & Payne is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Nabors Industries, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Profitability

This table compares Nabors Industries and Helmerich & Payne’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Nabors Industries -32.35% -13.31% -5.32%
Helmerich & Payne -11.19% -3.37% -2.24%

Summary

Nabors Industries beats Helmerich & Payne on 9 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

Nabors Industries Company Profile

Nabors Industries Ltd. owns and operates a land-based drilling rig fleet. The Company is a provider of offshore platform drilling rigs in the United States and multiple international markets. The Company conducts its Drilling & Rig Services business through four segments: U.S. Drilling, Canada Drilling, International Drilling and Rig Services. The Company provides wellbore placement services, drilling software and performance tools, drilling equipment and various technologies throughout the oil and gas markets. The Company’s Drilling & Rig Services business comprises land-based and offshore drilling rig operations and other rig services, consisting of equipment manufacturing, rig instrumentation and optimization software. The Company is a provider of directional drilling and measurement while drilling (MWD) systems and services. The Company also provides drilling technology and equipment, and well-site services.

Helmerich & Payne Company Profile

Helmerich & Payne, Inc. is engaged in contract drilling of oil and gas wells for others. The Company operates in the contract drilling industry. The Company’s contract drilling business consists of three segments: U.S. Land, Offshore and International Land. The Company is also engaged in the ownership, development and operation of commercial real estate and the research and development of rotary steerable technology. Its real estate investments are located within Tulsa, Oklahoma, and include a shopping center containing approximately 441,000 leasable square feet, multi-tenant industrial warehouse properties containing approximately one million leasable square feet and approximately 210 acres of undeveloped real estate. The Company provides drilling rigs, equipment, personnel and camps on a contract basis. The Company’s subsidiaries include Helmerich & Payne International Drilling Co. and Helmerich & Payne de Venezuela, C.A.

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