Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE: DUK) and Portland General Electric (NYSE:POR) are both mid-cap utilities companies, but which is the superior business? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their institutional ownership, analyst recommendations, valuation, profitability, risk, dividends and earnings.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and recommmendations for Duke Energy Corporation and Portland General Electric, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Duke Energy Corporation 3 9 2 0 1.93
Portland General Electric 4 2 0 0 1.33

Duke Energy Corporation presently has a consensus target price of $82.08, suggesting a potential downside of 5.96%. Portland General Electric has a consensus target price of $42.00, suggesting a potential downside of 11.00%. Given Duke Energy Corporation’s stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, research analysts clearly believe Duke Energy Corporation is more favorable than Portland General Electric.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Duke Energy Corporation and Portland General Electric’s revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Duke Energy Corporation $23.07 billion 2.65 $10.44 billion $3.37 25.90
Portland General Electric $1.99 billion 2.11 $687.00 million $2.24 21.07

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

Profitability

This table compares Duke Energy Corporation and Portland General Electric’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Duke Energy Corporation 9.89% 7.72% 2.38%
Portland General Electric 10.06% 8.48% 2.64%

Risk and Volatility

Duke Energy Corporation has a beta of 0.24, suggesting that its share price is 76% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Portland General Electric has a beta of 0.29, suggesting that its share price is 71% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Dividends

Duke Energy Corporation pays an annual dividend of $3.56 per share and has a dividend yield of 4.1%. Portland General Electric pays an annual dividend of $1.36 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.9%. Duke Energy Corporation pays out 105.6% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. Portland General Electric pays out 60.7% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Duke Energy Corporation has increased its dividend for 11 consecutive years and Portland General Electric has increased its dividend for 10 consecutive years. Duke Energy Corporation is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and longer track record of dividend growth.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

56.2% of Duke Energy Corporation shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 93.2% of Portland General Electric shares are owned by institutional investors. 0.1% of Duke Energy Corporation shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 0.6% of Portland General Electric shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, hedge funds and large money managers believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Summary

Duke Energy Corporation beats Portland General Electric on 9 of the 17 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Duke Energy Corporation

Duke Energy Corporation (Duke Energy) is an energy company. The Company operates through three segments: Electric Utilities and Infrastructure; Gas Utilities and Infrastructure, and Commercial Renewables. The Company operates in the United States through its direct and indirect subsidiaries. The Electric Utilities and Infrastructure segment provides retail electric service through the generation, transmission, distribution and sale of electricity to approximately 7.5 million customers within the Southeast and Midwest regions of the United States. The operations include electricity sold wholesale to municipalities, electric cooperative utilities and other load-serving entities. The Gas Utilities and Infrastructure segment serves residential, commercial, industrial and power generation natural gas customers. The Commercial Renewables primarily acquires, builds, develops and operates wind and solar renewable generation throughout the continental United States.

About Portland General Electric

Portland General Electric Company is an electric utility that is engaged in the wholesale purchase, transmission, distribution and retail sale of electricity in the State of Oregon. Its service area allocation of approximately 4,000 square miles is located entirely within Oregon and includes approximately 51 incorporated cities, of which Portland and Salem. It has five natural gas-fired generating facilities, which include Port Westward Unit 1 (PW1), Port Westward Unit 2 (PW2), Beaver natural gas-fired generating plant (Beaver), Coyote Springs Unit 1 (Coyote Springs) and Carty natural gas-fired generating plant (Carty). As of December 31, 2016, the Company owned and operated two wind farms, Biglow Canyon Wind Farm (Biglow Canyon) and Tucannon River Wind Farm (Tucannon River). The Company’s hydroelectric projects consist of Pelton/Round Butte on the Deschutes River near Madras, Oregon, four plants on the Clackamas River, and one on the Willamette River.

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