Esterline Technologies Corporation (NYSE: ESL) and American Science & Engineering (NASDAQ:ASEI) are both aerospace companies, but which is the better investment? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their institutional ownership, valuation, earnings, analyst recommendations, profitability, risk and dividends.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Esterline Technologies Corporation and American Science & Engineering’s gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Esterline Technologies Corporation $2.01 billion 1.39 $312.43 million $4.48 20.76
American Science & Engineering N/A N/A N/A ($0.37) -100.13

Esterline Technologies Corporation has higher revenue and earnings than American Science & Engineering. American Science & Engineering is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Esterline Technologies Corporation, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

92.2% of Esterline Technologies Corporation shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 72.9% of American Science & Engineering shares are owned by institutional investors. 1.4% of Esterline Technologies Corporation shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 2.4% of American Science & Engineering shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, large money managers and endowments believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Profitability

This table compares Esterline Technologies Corporation and American Science & Engineering’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Esterline Technologies Corporation 6.65% 9.18% 5.06%
American Science & Engineering 0.19% 0.15% 0.13%

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current ratings and recommmendations for Esterline Technologies Corporation and American Science & Engineering, as provided by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Esterline Technologies Corporation 1 4 1 0 2.00
American Science & Engineering 0 0 0 0 N/A

Esterline Technologies Corporation presently has a consensus target price of $92.67, indicating a potential downside of 0.36%. Given Esterline Technologies Corporation’s higher probable upside, equities analysts clearly believe Esterline Technologies Corporation is more favorable than American Science & Engineering.

Dividends

American Science & Engineering pays an annual dividend of $2.00 per share and has a dividend yield of 5.4%. Esterline Technologies Corporation does not pay a dividend. American Science & Engineering pays out -540.5% of its earnings in the form of a dividend.

Risk & Volatility

Esterline Technologies Corporation has a beta of 1.49, indicating that its stock price is 49% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, American Science & Engineering has a beta of 1.55, indicating that its stock price is 55% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Summary

Esterline Technologies Corporation beats American Science & Engineering on 8 of the 12 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Esterline Technologies Corporation

Esterline Technologies Corporation is a specialized manufacturing company. The Company designs, manufactures and markets engineered products and systems for application within the industries it serves. The Company operates through three segments: Avionics & Controls, Sensors & Systems, and Advanced Materials. The Company serves aerospace and defense customers. The Company’s Avionics & Controls business segment includes avionics systems, control and communication systems, and interface technologies capabilities. The Company’s Sensors & Systems business segment includes power systems, connection technologies and advanced sensors capabilities. The Company’s Advanced Materials business segment includes engineered materials and defense technologies capabilities. The Company designs and manufactures ruggedized military personal communication equipment, primarily headsets, handsets and field communications.

About American Science & Engineering

American Science and Engineering, Inc. (AS&E) is engaged in developing, manufacturing, marketing and selling X-ray inspection and other detection products. The Company manufactures X-ray inspection products that can be used to inspect parcels, baggage, vehicles, pallets, cargo containers and people. The Company offers its products for homeland security, force protection, public safety and other critical defense and security applications. The Company’s products and services are grouped into approximately five areas: cargo inspection systems, which include OmniView Gantry System, Z Portal System, Sentry Portal System, CarView System and ASE Connect; mobile cargo inspection systems, which include Z Backscatter Van; parcel and personnel screening inspection systems, which include Gemini System, SmartCheck System and MINI Z System; custom products, and service and support.

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