Sprague Resources (NYSE: SRLP) is one of 38 publicly-traded companies in the “Oil & Gas Refining and Marketing” industry, but how does it compare to its competitors? We will compare Sprague Resources to similar businesses based on the strength of its profitability, risk, institutional ownership, dividends, analyst recommendations, valuation and earnings.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

24.6% of Sprague Resources shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 47.2% of shares of all “Oil & Gas Refining and Marketing” companies are owned by institutional investors. 11.7% of shares of all “Oil & Gas Refining and Marketing” companies are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, hedge funds and endowments believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Volatility & Risk

Sprague Resources has a beta of 1.38, meaning that its share price is 38% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Sprague Resources’ competitors have a beta of 1.30, meaning that their average share price is 30% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of current ratings and recommmendations for Sprague Resources and its competitors, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Sprague Resources 0 0 2 0 3.00
Sprague Resources Competitors 361 1705 2122 108 2.46

Sprague Resources currently has a consensus target price of $33.00, indicating a potential upside of 28.65%. As a group, “Oil & Gas Refining and Marketing” companies have a potential upside of 9.43%. Given Sprague Resources’ stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, equities research analysts plainly believe Sprague Resources is more favorable than its competitors.

Profitability

This table compares Sprague Resources and its competitors’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Sprague Resources 1.77% 29.64% 4.95%
Sprague Resources Competitors -1.52% 2.05% 1.32%

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Sprague Resources and its competitors revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue EBITDA Price/Earnings Ratio
Sprague Resources $2.62 billion $105.38 million 12.64
Sprague Resources Competitors $45.68 billion $4.44 billion 23.07

Sprague Resources’ competitors have higher revenue and earnings than Sprague Resources. Sprague Resources is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than its competitors, indicating that it is currently more affordable than other companies in its industry.

Dividends

Sprague Resources pays an annual dividend of $2.43 per share and has a dividend yield of 9.5%. Sprague Resources pays out 119.7% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. As a group, “Oil & Gas Refining and Marketing” companies pay a dividend yield of 5.1% and pay out 864.8% of their earnings in the form of a dividend. Sprague Resources has raised its dividend for 2 consecutive years. Sprague Resources is clearly a better dividend stock than its competitors, given its higher yield and lower payout ratio.

Summary

Sprague Resources beats its competitors on 9 of the 15 factors compared.

About Sprague Resources

Sprague Resources LP is engaged in the purchase, storage, distribution and sale of refined products and natural gas, and provides storage and handling services for a range of materials. The Company operates through four segments: refined products, which purchases a range of refined products, such as heating oil, diesel fuel, residual fuel oil, asphalt, kerosene, jet fuel and gasoline from refining companies, trading organizations and producers; natural gas, which purchases natural gas from natural gas producers and trading companies, and sells and distributes natural gas to commercial and industrial customers in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic United States; materials handling, which offloads, stores and prepares for delivery a range of customer-owned products, including asphalt, clay slurry, coal and heavy equipment, and other operations, which include the purchase and distribution of coal, certain commercial trucking activities and the heating equipment service business.

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