Apple Hospitality REIT (NYSE: APLE) and Ashford Hospitality Trust (NYSE:AHT) are both finance companies, but which is the better stock? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, institutional ownership, valuation, profitability, risk, earnings and dividends.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

49.2% of Apple Hospitality REIT shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 70.2% of Ashford Hospitality Trust shares are held by institutional investors. 6.3% of Apple Hospitality REIT shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 18.2% of Ashford Hospitality Trust shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and recommmendations for Apple Hospitality REIT and Ashford Hospitality Trust, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Apple Hospitality REIT 0 3 1 0 2.25
Ashford Hospitality Trust 0 3 3 0 2.50

Apple Hospitality REIT currently has a consensus price target of $20.00, suggesting a potential upside of 5.54%. Ashford Hospitality Trust has a consensus price target of $7.46, suggesting a potential upside of 7.94%. Given Ashford Hospitality Trust’s stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Ashford Hospitality Trust is more favorable than Apple Hospitality REIT.

Volatility & Risk

Apple Hospitality REIT has a beta of 0.61, indicating that its stock price is 39% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Ashford Hospitality Trust has a beta of 1.48, indicating that its stock price is 48% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Apple Hospitality REIT and Ashford Hospitality Trust’s top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Apple Hospitality REIT $1.18 billion 3.58 $420.26 million $0.80 23.69
Ashford Hospitality Trust $1.45 billion 0.46 $394.52 million ($1.34) -5.16

Apple Hospitality REIT has higher revenue, but lower earnings than Ashford Hospitality Trust. Ashford Hospitality Trust is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Apple Hospitality REIT, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Profitability

This table compares Apple Hospitality REIT and Ashford Hospitality Trust’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Apple Hospitality REIT 14.97% 5.05% 3.57%
Ashford Hospitality Trust -5.43% -10.41% -1.64%

Dividends

Apple Hospitality REIT pays an annual dividend of $1.20 per share and has a dividend yield of 6.3%. Ashford Hospitality Trust pays an annual dividend of $0.48 per share and has a dividend yield of 6.9%. Apple Hospitality REIT pays out 150.0% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. Ashford Hospitality Trust pays out -35.8% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Ashford Hospitality Trust is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and lower payout ratio.

Summary

Ashford Hospitality Trust beats Apple Hospitality REIT on 9 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Apple Hospitality REIT

Apple Hospitality REIT, Inc. is a hospitality real estate investment trust. The Company invests in real estate, primarily in the lodging sector, in the United States. As of September 13, 2017, the Company owned 237 hotels, with more than 30,000 guestrooms, diversified across the Hilton and Marriott families of brands with locations in urban, high-end suburban and developing markets across 33 states. As of December 31, 2016, the Company’s hotels included various brands, such as Hilton Garden Inn, Courtyard, Homewood Suites, Residence Inn, SpringHill Suites, TownePlace Suites, Fairfield Inn, Home2 Suites, Marriott, Embassy Suites, Hilton and Renaissance. As of December 31, 2016, the Company’s hotels were located in various states of the United States, such as Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, South Carolina, Texas, Utah and Virginia.

About Ashford Hospitality Trust

Ashford Hospitality Trust, Inc. is an externally-advised real estate investment trust (REIT). The Company is focused on investing in the hospitality industry with a focus on full-service upscale and upper-upscale hotels in the United States. The Company owns its lodging investments and conducts its business through Ashford Hospitality Limited Partnership (Ashford Trust OP), its operating partnership. The Company’s portfolio consists of 121 properties with over 25000 rooms; 86 hotel condominium units at WorldQuest Resort in Orlando, Florida; a 96.6% ownership in Ashford Quantitative Alternatives (U.S.), LP (the AQUA U.S. Fund); a 29.7% ownership in Ashford Inc., and a 13.3% ownership in OpenKey.

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