Post Properties (NYSE: PPS) and Independence Realty Trust (NYSE:IRT) are both financials companies, but which is the better investment? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, valuation, profitability, risk, dividends, earnings and institutional ownership.

Risk & Volatility

Post Properties has a beta of 0.12, meaning that its share price is 88% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Independence Realty Trust has a beta of 1.08, meaning that its share price is 8% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Profitability

This table compares Post Properties and Independence Realty Trust’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Post Properties 17.36% 5.79% 3.07%
Independence Realty Trust -10.28% -3.22% -1.22%

Dividends

Post Properties pays an annual dividend of $1.88 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.9%. Independence Realty Trust pays an annual dividend of $0.72 per share and has a dividend yield of 7.1%. Post Properties pays out 131.5% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. Independence Realty Trust pays out -313.0% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Independence Realty Trust has increased its dividend for 6 consecutive years. Independence Realty Trust is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and longer track record of dividend growth.

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of current ratings and price targets for Post Properties and Independence Realty Trust, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Post Properties 0 0 1 0 3.00
Independence Realty Trust 0 0 5 0 3.00

Post Properties presently has a consensus target price of $72.50, indicating a potential upside of 11.50%. Independence Realty Trust has a consensus target price of $10.31, indicating a potential upside of 1.40%. Given Post Properties’ higher possible upside, analysts plainly believe Post Properties is more favorable than Independence Realty Trust.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Post Properties and Independence Realty Trust’s gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Post Properties N/A N/A N/A $1.43 45.47
Independence Realty Trust N/A N/A N/A ($0.23) -44.22

Independence Realty Trust is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Post Properties, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

94.3% of Post Properties shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 74.8% of Independence Realty Trust shares are held by institutional investors. 2.2% of Post Properties shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 0.6% of Independence Realty Trust shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Summary

Post Properties beats Independence Realty Trust on 7 of the 12 factors compared between the two stocks.

Post Properties Company Profile

Post Properties, Inc. is a self-administrated and self-managed equity real estate investment trust (REIT). The Company’s segments include Fully stabilized (same store) communities, which includes apartment communities that have been stabilized for both the current and prior year; Newly stabilized communities, which includes communities that reached stabilized occupancy in the prior year; Lease-up communities, which includes communities that are under development, rehabilitation and in lease-up but were not stabilized by the beginning of the current year, including communities that stabilized during the current year; Acquired communities, which include communities acquired in the current or prior year, and Held for sale and sold communities, which include apartment and mixed-use communities classified as held for sale or sold. Its operating divisions include Post Apartment Management, Post Construction and Property Services, Post Investment Group and Post Corporate Services.

Independence Realty Trust Company Profile

Independence Realty Trust, Inc. is an internally-managed real estate investment trust (REIT). The Company is engaged in the business of owning, managing, operating, leasing, acquiring, developing, investing in, and disposing of real estate assets. The Company owns apartment properties in geographic non-gateway markets. As of July 5, 2017, the Company owns and operates 47 multifamily apartment properties, totaling 13,198 units. Its properties include Copper Mill, Crestmont, Heritage Trace, Runaway Bay, Berkshire Square, The Crossings, Reserve at Eagle Ridge, Windrush, Heritage Park, Raindance, Augusta, Invitational, Carrington Park, Walnut Hill, Lenoxplace, Bennington Pond, Jamestown, Meadows, Oxmoor, Bayview Club, Arbors River Oaks, Fox Trails, Bridge Pointe, The Aventine Greenville and Westmont Commons.

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