JetBlue Airways Corporation (NASDAQ: JBLU) and SkyWest (NASDAQ:SKYW) are both mid-cap transportation companies, but which is the better business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their dividends, institutional ownership, profitability, analyst recommendations, earnings, valuation and risk.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

84.5% of JetBlue Airways Corporation shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 89.4% of SkyWest shares are held by institutional investors. 0.6% of JetBlue Airways Corporation shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 3.5% of SkyWest shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, hedge funds and endowments believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Profitability

This table compares JetBlue Airways Corporation and SkyWest’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
JetBlue Airways Corporation 9.78% 16.75% 6.99%
SkyWest -4.59% 11.10% 3.06%

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares JetBlue Airways Corporation and SkyWest’s top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
JetBlue Airways Corporation $6.82 billion 0.98 $1.54 billion $1.97 10.32
SkyWest $3.13 billion 0.77 $618.51 million ($2.83) -16.36

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

Dividends

SkyWest pays an annual dividend of $0.32 per share and has a dividend yield of 0.7%. JetBlue Airways Corporation does not pay a dividend. SkyWest pays out -11.3% of its earnings in the form of a dividend.

Volatility & Risk

JetBlue Airways Corporation has a beta of 0.59, indicating that its stock price is 41% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, SkyWest has a beta of 1.68, indicating that its stock price is 68% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of recent ratings for JetBlue Airways Corporation and SkyWest, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
JetBlue Airways Corporation 1 8 5 0 2.29
SkyWest 0 2 2 1 2.80

JetBlue Airways Corporation currently has a consensus price target of $25.18, indicating a potential upside of 23.80%. SkyWest has a consensus price target of $43.50, indicating a potential downside of 6.05%. Given JetBlue Airways Corporation’s higher probable upside, research analysts clearly believe JetBlue Airways Corporation is more favorable than SkyWest.

Summary

JetBlue Airways Corporation beats SkyWest on 9 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

JetBlue Airways Corporation Company Profile

JetBlue Airways Corporation is a passenger carrier company. The Company provides air transportation services across the United States, the Caribbean and Latin America. Its segments include Domestic, and Caribbean & Latin America. It operates various kinds of aircrafts, including Airbus A321, Airbus A320 and Embraer E190. It also provides premium transcontinental product called Mint. As of December 31, 2016, Mint included 16 fully lie-flat seats, four of which were in suites with a privacy door. The Company also provides Fly-Fi in-flight Internet service across its Airbus fleet. It provides its customers a choice to purchase tickets from three branded fares, which include Blue, Blue Plus and Blue Flex. Each of these fare include different offerings, such as free checked bags, reduced change fees and additional TrueBlue points. As of December 31, 2016, its Airbus A321 aircraft in a single cabin layout had 200 seats and those with Mint premium service had a seating capacity of 159 seats.

SkyWest Company Profile

SkyWest, Inc., through its subsidiaries, SkyWest Airlines, Inc. (SkyWest Airlines) and ExpressJet Airlines, Inc. (ExpressJet), operates regional airline operations in the United States. The Company’s segments include SkyWest Airlines, ExpressJet and SkyWest Leasing. The SkyWest Airlines segment provides regional jet service to airports primarily located in the Midwestern and Western United States, as well as Mexico and Canada. The ExpressJet segment provides regional jet service to airports primarily located in the Eastern and Midwestern United States, as well as Mexico, Canada and the Caribbean. The SkyWest Leasing segment includes its E175 aircraft ownership business. As of December 31, 2016, the Company offered scheduled passenger service with approximately 3,160 daily departures to destinations in the United States, Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean. The Company’s flights are operated as Delta Connection, United Express, American Eagle or Alaska Airlines.

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