Reviewing Lamar Advertising (NASDAQ:LAMR) & Whitestone REIT (NASDAQ:WSR)

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Lamar Advertising (NASDAQ:LAMR) and Whitestone REIT (NYSE:WSR) are both finance companies, but which is the better business? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their profitability, valuation, risk, earnings, dividends, analyst recommendations and institutional ownership.

Dividends

Lamar Advertising pays an annual dividend of $4.00 per share and has a dividend yield of 7.7%. Whitestone REIT pays an annual dividend of $1.14 per share and has a dividend yield of 16.7%. Lamar Advertising pays out 69.0% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Whitestone REIT pays out 107.5% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. Lamar Advertising has raised its dividend for 4 consecutive years.

Profitability

This table compares Lamar Advertising and Whitestone REIT’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Lamar Advertising 21.21% 32.37% 6.34%
Whitestone REIT 19.86% 6.73% 2.25%

Institutional and Insider Ownership

81.2% of Lamar Advertising shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 55.8% of Whitestone REIT shares are held by institutional investors. 15.2% of Lamar Advertising shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 5.6% of Whitestone REIT shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Lamar Advertising and Whitestone REIT’s revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Lamar Advertising $1.75 billion 2.96 $372.11 million $5.80 8.90
Whitestone REIT $119.25 million 2.41 $23.68 million $1.06 6.44

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

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current ratings and target prices for Lamar Advertising and Whitestone REIT, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Lamar Advertising 0 2 1 0 2.33
Whitestone REIT 0 1 1 0 2.50

Lamar Advertising currently has a consensus target price of $93.00, indicating a potential upside of 80.13%. Whitestone REIT has a consensus target price of $14.00, indicating a potential upside of 104.98%. Given Whitestone REIT’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, analysts clearly believe Whitestone REIT is more favorable than Lamar Advertising.

Risk and Volatility

Lamar Advertising has a beta of 1.04, suggesting that its share price is 4% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Whitestone REIT has a beta of 1.03, suggesting that its share price is 3% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Summary

Lamar Advertising beats Whitestone REIT on 13 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Lamar Advertising

Founded in 1902, Lamar Advertising (Nasdaq: LAMR) is one of the largest outdoor advertising companies in North America, with approximately 360,000 displays across the United States and Canada. Lamar offers advertisers a variety of billboard, interstate logo, transit and airport advertising formats, helping both local businesses and national brands reach broad audiences every day. In addition to its more traditional out-of-home inventory, Lamar is proud to offer its customers the largest network of digital billboards in the United States with over 3,100 displays.

About Whitestone REIT

Whitestone is a community-centered retail REIT that acquires, owns, manages, develops and redevelops high quality "E-Commerce resistant" neighborhood, community and lifestyle retail centers principally located in the largest, fastest growing and most affluent markets in the Sunbelt. Whitestone's optimal mix of national, regional and local tenants provides daily necessities, needed services and entertainment to the communities in which they are located. Whitestone's properties are primarily located in business-friendly Phoenix, Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston and San Antonio, which are among the fastest growing U.S. population centers with highly educated workforces, high household incomes and strong job growth. As of December 31, 2018, Whitestone's total shareholder return ranks #2 of 17, #1 of 17, and #2 of 16, of the U.S. public shopping center REITs for the one-year, three-year, and five-year periods, respectively.

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