Dynegy (NYSE: DYN) and Portland General Electric (NYSE:POR) are both utilities companies, but which is the superior stock? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their risk, analyst recommendations, dividends, profitability, valuation, institutional ownership and earnings.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

92.6% of Portland General Electric shares are held by institutional investors. 1.8% of Dynegy shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 0.6% of Portland General Electric 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.

Volatility and Risk

Dynegy has a beta of 1.89, indicating that its stock price is 89% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Portland General Electric has a beta of 0.3, indicating that its stock price is 70% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Dividends

Portland General Electric pays an annual dividend of $1.36 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.8%. Dynegy does not pay a dividend. Portland General Electric pays out 58.9% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Portland General Electric has raised its dividend for 11 consecutive years.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current ratings and target prices for Dynegy and Portland General Electric, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Dynegy 0 4 5 0 2.56
Portland General Electric 3 3 0 0 1.50

Dynegy currently has a consensus target price of $13.01, suggesting a potential upside of 14.55%. Portland General Electric has a consensus target price of $44.50, suggesting a potential downside of 8.10%. Given Dynegy’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, analysts clearly believe Dynegy is more favorable than Portland General Electric.

Profitability

This table compares Dynegy and Portland General Electric’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Dynegy -0.22% -17.98% -2.46%
Portland General Electric 10.21% 8.65% 2.70%

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Dynegy and Portland General Electric’s gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Dynegy $4.32 billion 0.35 -$1.24 billion ($0.23) -49.39
Portland General Electric $1.92 billion 2.24 $193.00 million $2.31 20.96

Portland General Electric has lower revenue, but higher earnings than Dynegy. Dynegy is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Portland General Electric, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Summary

Portland General Electric beats Dynegy on 9 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Dynegy

Dynegy Inc. (Dynegy) is a holding company and conducts the business operations through its subsidiaries. The primary business of Dynegy is the production and sale of electric energy, capacity and ancillary services from the fleet of 18 operating power plants in six states totaling approximately 12,300 megawatt (MW) of generating capacity. Dynegy sells electric energy, capacity and ancillary services on a wholesale basis from its power generation facilities. Its customers include Regional Transmission Organization (RTOs) and Independent System Operators (ISOs), integrated utilities, municipalities, electric cooperatives, transmission and distribution utilities, industrial customers, power marketers, financial participants, such as banks and hedge funds, other power generators and commercial end-users. It has three segments: Midwest segment (GEN-MW), West segment (GEN-WE) and Northeast segment (GEN-NE). Its wholly owned subsidiary is Dynegy Holdings Inc. (DHI).

About Portland General Electric

Portland General Electric Company is an electric utility that is engaged in the wholesale purchase, transmission, distribution and retail sale of electricity in the State of Oregon. Its service area allocation of approximately 4,000 square miles is located entirely within Oregon and includes approximately 51 incorporated cities, of which Portland and Salem. It has five natural gas-fired generating facilities, which include Port Westward Unit 1 (PW1), Port Westward Unit 2 (PW2), Beaver natural gas-fired generating plant (Beaver), Coyote Springs Unit 1 (Coyote Springs) and Carty natural gas-fired generating plant (Carty). As of December 31, 2016, the Company owned and operated two wind farms, Biglow Canyon Wind Farm (Biglow Canyon) and Tucannon River Wind Farm (Tucannon River). The Company’s hydroelectric projects consist of Pelton/Round Butte on the Deschutes River near Madras, Oregon, four plants on the Clackamas River, and one on the Willamette River.

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