ONEOK (NYSE: OKE) and Mplx Lp (NYSE:MPLX) are both large-cap utilities companies, but which is the better stock? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their institutional ownership, profitability, earnings, dividends, valuation, risk and analyst recommendations.

Volatility & Risk

ONEOK has a beta of 1.3, suggesting that its share price is 30% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Mplx Lp has a beta of 1.36, suggesting that its share price is 36% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of recent ratings and price targets for ONEOK and Mplx Lp, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
ONEOK 0 8 5 0 2.38
Mplx Lp 0 1 11 1 3.00

ONEOK presently has a consensus target price of $58.33, suggesting a potential upside of 4.52%. Mplx Lp has a consensus target price of $41.67, suggesting a potential upside of 21.37%. Given Mplx Lp’s stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Mplx Lp is more favorable than ONEOK.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

51.3% of ONEOK shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 63.2% of Mplx Lp shares are held by institutional investors. 1.0% of ONEOK shares are held by company 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.

Profitability

This table compares ONEOK and Mplx Lp’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
ONEOK 3.26% 8.62% 2.11%
Mplx Lp 20.85% 4.01% 4.15%

Dividends

ONEOK pays an annual dividend of $2.98 per share and has a dividend yield of 5.3%. Mplx Lp pays an annual dividend of $2.25 per share and has a dividend yield of 6.6%. ONEOK pays out 186.3% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. Mplx Lp pays out 271.1% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. ONEOK has raised its dividend for 14 consecutive years and Mplx Lp has raised its dividend for 3 consecutive years.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares ONEOK and Mplx Lp’s gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
ONEOK $10.49 billion 2.02 $1.68 billion $1.60 34.88
Mplx Lp $3.04 billion 4.39 $1.47 billion $0.83 41.36

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

Summary

Mplx Lp beats ONEOK on 11 of the 18 factors compared between the two stocks.

About ONEOK

ONEOK, Inc. is an energy midstream service provider in the United States. The Company owns and operates natural gas liquids (NGL) systems, and is engaged in the gathering, processing, storage and transportation of natural gas. THe Company’s operations include a 38,000-mile integrated network of NGL and natural gas pipelines, processing plants, fractionators and storage facilities in the Mid-Continent, Williston, Permian and Rocky Mountain regions. The Company operates through three business segments. The Natural Gas Gathering and Processing segment provides midstream services to contracted producers in North Dakota, Montana, Wyoming, Kansas and Oklahoma. The Natural Gas Liquids segment owns and operates facilities that gather, fractionate, treat and distribute NGLs and store NGL products primarily in the Mid-Continental, Permian Basin and the Rocky Mountain regions. The Natural Gas Pipelines segment provides transportation and storage services to end users.

About Mplx Lp

MPLX LP is a master limited partnership (MLP) formed by Marathon Petroleum Corporation (MPC) to own, operate, develop and acquire midstream energy infrastructure assets. The Company is engaged in the gathering, processing and transportation of natural gas; the gathering, transportation, fractionation, storage and marketing of natural gas liquids (NGLs), and the gathering, transportation and storage of crude oil and refined petroleum products. Its segments are Logistics and Storage (L&S), and Gathering and Processing (G&P). The L&S segment includes transportation and storage of crude oil, refined products and other hydrocarbon-based products. As of December 31, 2016, the G&P segment operated various natural gas gathering systems that had a combined 5,439 million cubic feet per day (mmcf/d) throughput capacity. As of December 31, 2016, its assets included infrastructure to support MPC, including approximately 2,900 miles of crude oil and refined product pipelines across nine states.

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