Helix Energy Solutions Group (NYSE: HLX) and Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. (NYSE:FGP) are both small-cap oils/energy companies, but which is the superior investment? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, institutional ownership, valuation, earnings, risk, profitability and dividends.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Helix Energy Solutions Group and Ferrellgas Partners, L.P.’s gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Helix Energy Solutions Group $544.13 million 2.13 $107.34 million ($0.51) -15.39
Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. $1.93 billion 0.25 $213.18 million ($0.55) -9.09

Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. has higher revenue and earnings than Helix Energy Solutions Group. Helix Energy Solutions Group is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Ferrellgas Partners, L.P., indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current recommendations for Helix Energy Solutions Group and Ferrellgas Partners, L.P., as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Helix Energy Solutions Group 0 3 6 0 2.67
Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. 1 3 1 0 2.00

Helix Energy Solutions Group currently has a consensus price target of $9.33, indicating a potential upside of 18.84%. Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. has a consensus price target of $9.59, indicating a potential upside of 91.75%. Given Ferrellgas Partners, L.P.’s higher possible upside, analysts plainly believe Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. is more favorable than Helix Energy Solutions Group.

Risk and Volatility

Helix Energy Solutions Group has a beta of 2.63, suggesting that its stock price is 163% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. has a beta of 0.66, suggesting that its stock price is 34% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Dividends

Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. pays an annual dividend of $0.40 per share and has a dividend yield of 8.0%. Helix Energy Solutions Group does not pay a dividend. Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. pays out -72.7% of its earnings in the form of a dividend.

Profitability

This table compares Helix Energy Solutions Group and Ferrellgas Partners, L.P.’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Helix Energy Solutions Group -12.09% -1.21% -0.71%
Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. -2.83% N/A -3.26%

Institutional and Insider Ownership

86.9% of Helix Energy Solutions Group shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 6.9% of Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. shares are held by institutional investors. 5.7% of Helix Energy Solutions Group shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 0.5% of Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, hedge funds and large money managers believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Summary

Helix Energy Solutions Group beats Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. on 8 of the 15 factors compared between the two stocks.

Helix Energy Solutions Group Company Profile

Helix Energy Solutions Group, Inc. is an international offshore energy services company. The Company provides services to the offshore energy industry, with a focus on well intervention and robotics operations. The Company operates in three segments: Well Intervention, Robotics and Production Facilities. Its Well Intervention segment includes the Company’s vessels and equipment used to perform well intervention services primarily in the Gulf of Mexico and North Sea regions. Its Robotics segment includes remotely operated vehicles (ROVs), trenchers and ROVDrills designed to complement offshore construction and well intervention services, and operates chartered ROV support vessels. Its Production Facilities segment includes the Helix Producer I (the HP I), a floating production vessel, the Helix Fast Response System (the HFRS), and its ownership interest in Independence Hub, LLC (Independence Hub).

Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. Company Profile

Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. is engaged in the retail distribution of propane and related equipment sales, and midstream operations, which include crude oil logistics. The Company’s segments include propane and related equipment sales, midstream operations-crude oil logistics, and corporate and other. The propane and related equipment sales segment consists of the distribution of propane and related equipment and supplies. The midstream operations-crude oil logistics segment is engaged in providing crude oil transportation and logistics services. The corporate and other segment includes midstream operations-water solutions. The Company’s two subsidiaries include Ferrellgas Partners Finance Corp. and the operating partnership. Its general partner performs all management functions for the Company and holds general partner interest in Ferrellgas Partners and the operating partnership. It is a distributor of propane and related equipment and supplies to customers in the United States.

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