CyrusOne (NASDAQ: CONE) and American Tower Corporation (REIT) (NYSE:AMT) are both mid-cap finance companies, but which is the better investment? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their institutional ownership, analyst recommendations, risk, valuation, earnings, dividends and profitability.

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of recent ratings for CyrusOne and American Tower Corporation (REIT), as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
CyrusOne 1 1 10 0 2.75
American Tower Corporation (REIT) 0 0 11 0 3.00

CyrusOne presently has a consensus price target of $61.00, suggesting a potential downside of 3.08%. American Tower Corporation (REIT) has a consensus price target of $143.64, suggesting a potential downside of 2.63%. Given American Tower Corporation (REIT)’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe American Tower Corporation (REIT) is more favorable than CyrusOne.

Volatility & Risk

CyrusOne has a beta of 0.83, suggesting that its share price is 17% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, American Tower Corporation (REIT) has a beta of 0.71, suggesting that its share price is 29% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Dividends

CyrusOne pays an annual dividend of $1.68 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.7%. American Tower Corporation (REIT) pays an annual dividend of $2.56 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.7%. CyrusOne pays out -541.9% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. American Tower Corporation (REIT) pays out 102.8% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. CyrusOne has raised its dividend for 5 consecutive years. CyrusOne is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and longer track record of dividend growth.

Profitability

This table compares CyrusOne and American Tower Corporation (REIT)’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
CyrusOne -4.35% 1.30% 0.52%
American Tower Corporation (REIT) 18.58% 16.70% 3.74%

Insider and Institutional Ownership

96.7% of CyrusOne shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 92.1% of American Tower Corporation (REIT) shares are owned by institutional investors. 1.6% of CyrusOne shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 0.9% of American Tower Corporation (REIT) shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares CyrusOne and American Tower Corporation (REIT)’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
CyrusOne N/A N/A N/A ($0.31) -203.03
American Tower Corporation (REIT) $6.33 billion 10.00 $3.74 billion $2.49 59.24

American Tower Corporation (REIT) has higher revenue and earnings than CyrusOne. CyrusOne is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than American Tower Corporation (REIT), indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Summary

American Tower Corporation (REIT) beats CyrusOne on 9 of the 15 factors compared between the two stocks.

CyrusOne Company Profile

CyrusOne Inc. is a real estate investment trust. The Company is an owner, operator and developer of enterprise-class, carrier-neutral, multi-tenant data center properties. The Company’s data centers are generally purpose-built facilities with redundant power and cooling. The CyrusOne National IX Platform (the National IX Platform) delivers interconnection across states and between metro-enabled sites within its footprint and beyond. The Company has data centers in the United States, London and Singapore. As of December 31, 2016, the Company provided mission-critical data center facilities for 932 customers in 35 data centers and two recovery centers in 11 distinct markets (nine cities in the United States, London and Singapore) with approximately 3,904,000 net rentable square feet (NRSF). The Company provides round the clock security guard monitoring with customizable security features. As of December 31, 2016, the Company had approximately 1,657,000 NRSF under development.

American Tower Corporation (REIT) Company Profile

American Tower Corporation (ATC) is a holding company. The Company operates as a real estate investment trust (REIT), which owns, operates and develops multitenant communications real estate. ATC’s segments include U.S. property, Asia property, EMEA property, Latin America property, Services and Other. Its primary business is property operations, which include the leasing of space on communications sites to wireless service providers, radio and television broadcast companies, wireless data providers, government agencies and municipalities, and tenants in various other industries. Its U.S. property segment includes operations in the United States. Its Asia property segment includes operations in India. The EMEA property segment includes operations in Germany, Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa and Uganda. The Latin America property segment includes operations in Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico and Peru. Its services segment offers tower-related services in the United States.

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