Media General (NYSE: MEG) and Liberty Media (NASDAQ:FWONA) are both consumer discretionary companies, but which is the superior business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, valuation, dividends, institutional ownership, profitability, earnings and risk.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of current ratings and recommmendations for Media General and Liberty Media, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Media General 0 0 1 0 3.00
Liberty Media 0 5 4 0 2.44

Media General currently has a consensus target price of $8.00, indicating a potential downside of 56.78%. Liberty Media has a consensus target price of $39.00, indicating a potential upside of 16.94%. Given Liberty Media’s higher probable upside, analysts clearly believe Liberty Media is more favorable than Media General.

Institutional and Insider Ownership

90.8% of Media General shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 9.9% of Liberty Media shares are owned by institutional investors. 16.5% of Media General shares are owned by company insiders. Comparatively, 5.3% of Liberty Media shares are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Profitability

This table compares Media General and Liberty Media’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Media General -4.25% 6.92% 2.28%
Liberty Media N/A -0.59% -0.31%

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Media General and Liberty Media’s revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Media General N/A N/A N/A ($0.48) -38.56
Liberty Media $5.28 billion 1.45 $680.00 million ($0.38) -87.76

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

About Media General

Media General, Inc. is a television broadcasting and digital media company. The Company provides news, information and entertainment in markets across the United States. The Company operates or services 71 network-affiliated broadcast television stations in 48 markets along with the digital media business. The Company’s network affiliations include twelve CBS stations, nine NBC stations, seven ABC stations, one FOX station, one CW station and one MyNetworkTV station. The Company offers consumers and advertisers with entertainment and information, content and distribution on every screen. Its portfolio of broadcast, digital and mobile products informs and engages 23% of United States Television (TV) households and 43% of the United States Internet audience. The Company has the diverse digital media business with a portfolio that includes LIN Digital, LIN Mobile, HYFN, Dedicated Media, Federated Media and BiteSizeTV.

About Liberty Media

Liberty Media Corporation (Liberty) owns interests in subsidiaries and other companies, which are engaged in the media and entertainment industries. Through its subsidiaries and affiliates, the Company principally operates in North America. Its principal businesses and assets include its consolidated subsidiaries Sirius XM Holdings Inc. (SIRIUS XM) and the Braves Holdings, LLC (Braves Holdings), and its equity affiliate Live Nation Entertainment, Inc. (Live Nation). The Company operates through two segments: SIRIUS X, and corporate and other. SIRIUS XM transmits its music, sports, entertainment, comedy, talk, news, traffic and weather channels, as well as infotainment services, in the United States on a subscription fee basis through its approximately two satellite radio systems. SIRIUS XM has approximately 29.6 million subscribers. Its corporate and other segment includes its consolidated subsidiary, Braves Holdings.

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