Plantronics (NYSE: PLT) and QUALCOMM (NASDAQ:QCOM) are both computer and technology companies, but which is the better business? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their institutional ownership, profitability, valuation, analyst recommendations, earnings, risk and dividends.

Dividends

Plantronics pays an annual dividend of $0.60 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.4%. QUALCOMM pays an annual dividend of $2.28 per share and has a dividend yield of 4.4%. Plantronics pays out 24.3% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. QUALCOMM pays out 87.4% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. Plantronics has increased its dividend for 6 consecutive years.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

91.2% of Plantronics shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 77.1% of QUALCOMM shares are held by institutional investors. 3.2% of Plantronics shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 0.2% of QUALCOMM shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current ratings and target prices for Plantronics and QUALCOMM, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Plantronics 0 1 2 0 2.67
QUALCOMM 1 16 10 0 2.33

Plantronics presently has a consensus target price of $60.00, suggesting a potential upside of 41.68%. QUALCOMM has a consensus target price of $64.27, suggesting a potential upside of 24.05%. Given Plantronics’ stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, equities analysts clearly believe Plantronics is more favorable than QUALCOMM.

Risk & Volatility

Plantronics has a beta of 1.27, suggesting that its stock price is 27% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, QUALCOMM has a beta of 1.29, suggesting that its stock price is 29% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Profitability

This table compares Plantronics and QUALCOMM’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Plantronics 9.40% 21.31% 7.81%
QUALCOMM 17.26% 19.64% 10.95%

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Plantronics and QUALCOMM’s top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Plantronics $862.00 million 1.65 $138.73 million $2.47 17.15
QUALCOMM $22.57 billion 3.39 $7.15 billion $2.61 19.85

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

Summary

QUALCOMM beats Plantronics on 9 of the 17 factors compared between the two stocks.

Plantronics Company Profile

Plantronics, Inc. (Plantronics) is engaged in the design, manufacture, and distribution of headsets for business and consumer applications, and other specialty products for the hearing impaired. The Company is a global designer, manufacturer and marketer of communications headsets, telephone headset systems, other communication endpoints and accessories for the business and consumer markets. The Company develops communication products for offices and contact centers, mobile devices, cordless phones, and computers and gaming consoles. Its product categories include Enterprise, which includes corded and cordless communication headsets, audio processors, and telephone systems, and Consumer, which includes Bluetooth and corded products for mobile device applications, personal computer (PC) and gaming headsets, and specialty products marketed for hearing impaired individuals. It offers its products under two brands: Plantronics and Clarity.

QUALCOMM Company Profile

QUALCOMM Incorporated is engaged in the development and commercialization of a digital communication technology called code division multiple access (CDMA). The Company is engaged in the development and commercialization of the orthogonal frequency division multiple access (OFDMA) family of technologies, including long-term evolution (LTE), which is an Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFDM)-based standard that uses OFDMA and single-carrier Frequency Division Multiple Access (FDMA), for cellular wireless communication applications. The Company’s segments include QCT (Qualcomm CDMA Technologies), QTL (Qualcomm Technology Licensing) and QSI (Qualcomm Strategic Initiatives). The Company also develops and commercializes a range of other technologies used in handsets and tablets that contribute to end user demand. The Company’s products principally consist of integrated circuits (chips or chipsets) and system software used in mobile devices and in wireless networks.

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