Matson (NYSE: MATX) and Paragon Shipping (OTCMKTS:PRGNF) are both small-cap transportation companies, but which is the superior business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their earnings, profitability, analyst recommendations, institutional ownership, risk, valuation and dividends.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Matson and Paragon Shipping’s revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio NetIncome Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Matson $1.94 billion 0.61 $80.50 million $1.94 14.43
Paragon Shipping $1.98 million 0.00 $23.78 million N/A N/A

Matson has higher revenue and earnings than Paragon Shipping.

Dividends

Matson pays an annual dividend of $0.80 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.9%. Paragon Shipping does not pay a dividend. Matson pays out 41.2% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Paragon Shipping has raised its dividend for 4 consecutive years.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

83.2% of Matson shares are held by institutional investors. 2.6% of Matson shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Risk and Volatility

Matson has a beta of 1.23, indicating that its stock price is 23% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Paragon Shipping has a beta of 2.22, indicating that its stock price is 122% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of current recommendations and price targets for Matson and Paragon Shipping, as provided by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Matson 1 2 1 0 2.00
Paragon Shipping 0 0 0 0 N/A

Matson presently has a consensus price target of $25.67, indicating a potential downside of 8.30%. Given Matson’s higher possible upside, analysts plainly believe Matson is more favorable than Paragon Shipping.

Profitability

This table compares Matson and Paragon Shipping’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Matson 4.12% 17.49% 4.09%
Paragon Shipping N/A N/A N/A

Summary

Matson beats Paragon Shipping on 11 of the 14 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Matson

Matson, Inc., through its subsidiaries, operates as an ocean cargo carrier. The company operates in two segments, Ocean Transportation and Logistics. The Ocean Transportation segment offers ocean transportation services to the domestic economies of Hawaii, Alaska, and Guam, as well as to other island economies in Micronesia and in the South Pacific. This segment also operates an expedited service from China to Long Beach, California; and provides container and conventional freight services between New Zealand and other South Pacific Islands including Fiji, Samoa, American Samoa, Tonga, the Cook Islands, Niue, Vanuatu, Nauru, and the Solomon Islands. It primarily transports dry containers of mixed commodities, refrigerated commodities, packaged foods and beverages, building materials, automobiles, and household goods; general sustenance cargo; and garments, footwear, and other retail merchandise. This segment also offers container stevedoring, container equipment maintenance, and other terminal services on the islands of Oahu, Hawaii, Maui, and Kauai, as well as in the Alaska locations of Anchorage, Kodiak, and Dutch Harbor. It operates a fleet of 22 owned and 5 chartered vessels. The Logistics segment provides multimodal transportation services, including domestic and international rail intermodal service; long-haul and regional highway brokerage, specialized hauling, flat-bed and project work, less-than-truckload, and expedited freight; and supply chain management, and warehousing and distribution services. This segment also offers freight forwarding, consolidation, customs brokerage, purchase order management, and non-vessel operating common carrier services. The company was formerly known as Alexander & Baldwin Holdings, Inc. and changed its name to Matson, Inc. in June 2012. Matson, Inc. was founded in 1882 and is headquartered in Honolulu, Hawaii.

About Paragon Shipping

Paragon Shipping Inc. is a global provider of shipping transportation services. The Company specializes in transporting drybulk cargoes, including commodities as iron ore, coal, grain and other materials, along shipping routes across the world. It focuses on newbuilding program, including over three Kamsarmax drybulk carriers with fleet carrying capacity of over 245,400 deadweight tons. Allseas Marine S.A. and Seacommercial Shipping Services S.A provide commercial and technical management services for its fleet. Its technical management services include arranging for and managing crews, maintaining regulatory and classification society compliance, and providing technical support. Its commercial management services include negotiating charters for its vessels, monitoring various types of charters, monitoring the performance of its vessels, financing and negotiating the purchase and sale of its vessels, and obtaining insurance for its vessels and finance and accounting functions.

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