MYR Group (NASDAQ: MYRG) and Pike (NYSE:PIKE) are both small-cap utilities 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.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

87.4% of MYR Group shares are held by institutional investors. 5.0% of MYR Group 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.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current ratings and target prices for MYR Group and Pike, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
MYR Group 0 4 2 0 2.33
Pike 0 0 0 0 N/A

MYR Group currently has a consensus target price of $32.40, suggesting a potential downside of 6.68%. Given MYR Group’s higher possible upside, research analysts clearly believe MYR Group is more favorable than Pike.

Risk and Volatility

MYR Group has a beta of 0.43, suggesting that its share price is 57% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Pike has a beta of 1.22, suggesting that its share price is 22% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Profitability

This table compares MYR Group and Pike’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
MYR Group 1.12% 5.76% 2.66%
Pike N/A N/A N/A

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares MYR Group and Pike’s revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio NetIncome Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
MYR Group $1.14 billion 0.50 $21.43 million $0.93 37.33
Pike N/A N/A N/A $0.32 37.53

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

Summary

MYR Group beats Pike on 9 of the 10 factors compared between the two stocks.

About MYR Group

MYR Group Inc. is a holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries, provides specialty electrical construction services. The Company performs construction services in two segments: Transmission and Distribution (T&D), and Commercial and Industrial (C&I). The Company provides C&I electrical contracting services to general contractors, commercial and industrial facility owners, local governments and developers in the western and northeastern United States and western Canada. The Company’s T&D segment serves the T&D sector of the electric utility industry. The Company provides a range of services on electric transmission and distribution networks and substation facilities, such as design, engineering, procurement, construction and upgrade. The Company’s C&I segment provides services, such as the design, installation, maintenance and repair of commercial and industrial wiring, installation of traffic networks and the installation of bridge, roadway and tunnel lighting.

About Pike

Pike Corporation is a provider of construction and engineering services for investor-owned, municipal and co-operative electric utilities in the United States. The Company’s suite of energy and communication solutions includes facilities planning and siting, permitting, engineering, design, installation, maintenance and repair of power delivery systems, including utility-grade solar construction projects and storm-related services. The Company operates in two segments: construction and engineering. On January 1, 2014, Synergetic Design Holdings, Inc. merged with and into Pike Enterprises, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of the Company, and UC Synergetic, Inc. (UCS) merged with and into Pike Energy Solutions, LLC (PES), the surviving entity of which was named UC Synergetic, LLC.

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