Walgreens Boots Alliance (NASDAQ: WBA) and MWI Veterinary Supply (NASDAQ:MWIV) are both mid-cap retail/wholesale companies, but which is the better stock? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their earnings, dividends, analyst recommendations, valuation, profitability, risk and institutional ownership.

Profitability

This table compares Walgreens Boots Alliance and MWI Veterinary Supply’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Walgreens Boots Alliance 3.45% 18.36% 7.73%
MWI Veterinary Supply 2.51% 15.74% 7.86%

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Walgreens Boots Alliance and MWI Veterinary Supply’s gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Walgreens Boots Alliance $118.21 billion 0.59 $4.08 billion $3.78 18.57
MWI Veterinary Supply N/A N/A N/A $5.77 N/A

Walgreens Boots Alliance has higher revenue and earnings than MWI Veterinary Supply. MWI Veterinary Supply is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Walgreens Boots Alliance, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Dividends

Walgreens Boots Alliance pays an annual dividend of $1.60 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.3%. MWI Veterinary Supply does not pay a dividend. Walgreens Boots Alliance pays out 42.3% of its earnings in the form of a dividend.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of recent ratings and recommmendations for Walgreens Boots Alliance and MWI Veterinary Supply, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Walgreens Boots Alliance 0 8 12 0 2.60
MWI Veterinary Supply 0 0 0 0 N/A

Walgreens Boots Alliance presently has a consensus target price of $85.94, suggesting a potential upside of 22.46%.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

60.2% of Walgreens Boots Alliance shares are owned by institutional investors. 14.8% of Walgreens Boots Alliance shares are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Summary

Walgreens Boots Alliance beats MWI Veterinary Supply on 7 of the 10 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Walgreens Boots Alliance

Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (Walgreens Boots Alliance) is a holding company. The Company is a global pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing enterprise. Walgreens Boots Alliance operates through three divisions, including Retail Pharmacy USA, Retail Pharmacy International and Pharmaceutical Wholesale. The Company’s products are marketed under a number of brands, which include No7, the Botanics range, Almus (generic medicines), Boots Pharmaceuticals and Soap & Glory (bathing and beauty brand). In addition, the Company has investments in Guangzhou Pharmaceuticals Corporation and Nanjing Pharmaceutical Company Limited. The Company operates in around 25 countries, which include the wholesale and distribution network with over 340 distribution centers and more than 180,000 pharmacies, health centers and hospitals in 19 countries.

About MWI Veterinary Supply

MWI Veterinary Supply, Inc. (MWI) is a distributor of animal health products to veterinarians across the United States of America and United Kingdom. MWI sells both companion animal and production animal products including pharmaceuticals, vaccines, parasiticides, diagnostics, micro feed ingredients, supplies, pet food, capital equipment and nutritional products. MWI also offers customers a variety of value-added services, including its e-commerce platform, technology management systems, pharmacy fulfillment, inventory management system, equipment procurement consultation, special order fulfillment, educational seminars and pet cremation. As of September 30, 2014, the Company operates 23 distribution centers located across the United States and one distribution center in the United Kingdom.

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