athenahealth (NASDAQ: ATHN) and Fluidigm Corporation (NASDAQ:FLDM) are both medical companies, but which is the better stock? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their institutional ownership, dividends, earnings, risk, analyst recommendations, profitability and valuation.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares athenahealth and Fluidigm Corporation’s gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
athenahealth $1.15 billion 4.18 $127.70 million $0.80 150.59
Fluidigm Corporation $96.72 million 1.41 -$62.62 million ($2.46) -1.88

athenahealth has higher revenue and earnings than Fluidigm Corporation. Fluidigm Corporation is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than athenahealth, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

88.9% of Fluidigm Corporation shares are held by institutional investors. 3.2% of athenahealth shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 4.7% of Fluidigm Corporation shares are held by 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.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of current ratings and price targets for athenahealth and Fluidigm Corporation, as provided by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
athenahealth 2 11 11 0 2.38
Fluidigm Corporation 0 0 1 0 3.00

athenahealth presently has a consensus target price of $148.77, suggesting a potential upside of 23.49%. Fluidigm Corporation has a consensus target price of $9.00, suggesting a potential upside of 94.81%. Given Fluidigm Corporation’s stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, analysts plainly believe Fluidigm Corporation is more favorable than athenahealth.

Profitability

This table compares athenahealth and Fluidigm Corporation’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
athenahealth 2.80% 6.91% 3.80%
Fluidigm Corporation -74.05% -121.04% -18.55%

Risk & Volatility

athenahealth has a beta of 1.76, meaning that its stock price is 76% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Fluidigm Corporation has a beta of 3.37, meaning that its stock price is 237% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Summary

athenahealth beats Fluidigm Corporation on 8 of the 13 factors compared between the two stocks.

About athenahealth

athenahealth, Inc. provides network-based medical record, revenue cycle, patient engagement, care coordination and population health services. The Company also offers Epocrates and other point-of-care mobile applications. The Company delivers majority of its service offerings through a single instance of cloud-based software, athenaNet. The Company has a range of network-enabled services to support healthcare providers across the continuum of care. The Company offers various combinations of its services to its clients, including athenaOne and athenaOne for Hospitals and Health Systems, depending on whether they are medical groups and practices or hospitals and larger health systems. As of December 31, 2016, the Company connected care across a national network of approximately 88,000 providers and approximately 86 million patients. Its suite of network-enabled services includes athenaCollector, athenaClinicals, athenaCommunicator, athenaCoordinator, Population Health and Epocrates.

About Fluidigm Corporation

Fluidigm Corporation creates, manufactures and markets technologies and life science tools focused on the exploration and analysis of single cells, as well as the industrial application of genomics, based upon the Company’s core microfluidics and mass cytometry technologies. The Company operates in the development, manufacturing and commercialization of life science tools for the life science and Ag-Bio industries segment. Its products include preparatory instruments, preparatory analytical instruments, analytical instruments, integrated fluidic circuits (IFCs), and assays and reagents. Its preparatory instruments include C1 Single-Cell Auto Prep System, Access Array System, Juno System and IFCs, and Callisto System and IFC. Its analytical instruments include Biomark HD System, EP1 System and Helios/CyTOF 2 System. Its assays and reagents include Delta Gene and SNP Type Assays, and Access Array Target-Specific Primers and Targeted Sequencing Prep Primers.

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