Ann (NYSE: ANN) and bebe stores, inc. (NASDAQ:BEBE) are both women’s apparel retailers companies, but which is the better investment? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, institutional ownership, earnings, profitability, valuation, dividends and risk.

Profitability

This table compares Ann and bebe stores, inc.’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Ann 2.27% 10.25% 5.10%
bebe stores, inc. -11.36% -53.06% -30.80%

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current ratings and target prices for Ann and bebe stores, inc., as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Ann 0 0 1 0 3.00
bebe stores, inc. 0 0 0 0 N/A

Ann currently has a consensus target price of $50.00, suggesting a potential upside of 11.31%. Given Ann’s higher possible upside, research analysts clearly believe Ann is more favorable than bebe stores, inc..

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Ann and bebe stores, inc.’s gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio NetIncome Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Ann N/A N/A N/A $1.66 27.06
bebe stores, inc. $393.59 million 0.12 -$138.96 million ($4.96) -1.15

Ann has higher revenue, but lower earnings than bebe stores, inc.. bebe stores, inc. is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Ann, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

16.2% of bebe stores, inc. shares are held by institutional investors. 59.0% of bebe stores, inc. shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, hedge funds and endowments believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Risk and Volatility

Ann has a beta of 1.25, suggesting that its share price is 25% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, bebe stores, inc. has a beta of 2.7, suggesting that its share price is 170% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Summary

Ann beats bebe stores, inc. on 6 of the 10 factors compared between the two stocks.

Ann Company Profile

ANN INC., through its wholly owned subsidiaries, is a specialty retailer of women’s apparel, shoes and accessories sold primarily under the Ann Taylor and LOFT brands. The Company operates in four segments: Ann Taylor, LOFT, Ann Taylor Factory and LOFT Outlet. The Company operates approximately 1,030 retail stores in 47 states of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Canada, comprising 245 Ann Taylor stores, 537 LOFT stores, 116 Ann Taylor Factory stores, 127 LOFT Outlet stores and five Lou & Grey stores. In addition, the Company’s clients shop online in over 100 countries across the world at www.anntaylor.com and www.LOFT.com, and at three LOFT franchise locations in Mexico. The Company’s wholly owned subsidiary, AnnTaylor Distribution Services, Inc., owns its 256,000 square foot distribution center located in Louisville, Kentucky. The distribution center is located on approximately 29 acres.

bebe stores, inc. Company Profile

bebe stores, inc. designs, develops and produces a range of contemporary women’s apparel and accessories. The Company’s product offering includes a range of separates, tops, dresses, active wear and accessories for a range of occasions. It designs and develops its merchandise in-house, which is manufactured to its specifications and it also sources directly from third-party manufacturers. The Company also offers accessories, which include jewelry, optical, fragrance, shoes and handbags. The Company operates stores in the United States, Puerto Rico and Canada. In addition, it has an online store at www.bebe.com that ships to customers in the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, the United States Protectorates and internationally via its third-party providers, International Checkout and Shoprunner. It has international stores operated by licensees in South East Asia, the United Arab Emirates, Russia, South America, Turkey and other territories.

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