eHealth (NASDAQ: EHTH) and Willis Towers Watson Public Limited (NASDAQ:WLTW) are both finance companies, but which is the better business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their earnings, institutional ownership, risk, dividends, valuation, profitability and analyst recommendations.

Volatility & Risk

eHealth has a beta of 1.56, meaning that its stock price is 56% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Willis Towers Watson Public Limited has a beta of 0.93, meaning that its stock price is 7% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares eHealth and Willis Towers Watson Public Limited’s gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
eHealth $182.74 million 2.36 -$4.31 million ($0.35) -66.48
Willis Towers Watson Public Limited $7.90 billion 2.52 $1.57 billion $2.76 53.62

Willis Towers Watson Public Limited has higher revenue and earnings than eHealth. eHealth is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Willis Towers Watson Public Limited, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Dividends

Willis Towers Watson Public Limited pays an annual dividend of $2.12 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.4%. eHealth does not pay a dividend. Willis Towers Watson Public Limited pays out 76.8% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

90.0% of eHealth shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 94.4% of Willis Towers Watson Public Limited shares are held by institutional investors. 3.3% of eHealth shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 6.7% of Willis Towers Watson Public Limited shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, large money managers and endowments believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Profitability

This table compares eHealth and Willis Towers Watson Public Limited’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
eHealth -3.44% -5.64% -4.50%
Willis Towers Watson Public Limited 4.75% 10.63% 3.50%

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and target prices for eHealth and Willis Towers Watson Public Limited, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
eHealth 0 1 2 0 2.67
Willis Towers Watson Public Limited 2 1 10 0 2.62

eHealth presently has a consensus target price of $18.33, indicating a potential downside of 21.21%. Willis Towers Watson Public Limited has a consensus target price of $152.82, indicating a potential upside of 3.26%. Given Willis Towers Watson Public Limited’s higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Willis Towers Watson Public Limited is more favorable than eHealth.

Summary

Willis Towers Watson Public Limited beats eHealth on 12 of the 15 factors compared between the two stocks.

About eHealth

eHealth, Inc. provides a private online source of health insurance for individuals, families and small businesses. The Company is the parent company of eHealthInsurance, a private health insurance exchange where individuals, families and small businesses can compare health insurance products from various insurers side-by-side, and purchase and enroll in coverage online through its Websites (www.eHealth.com, www.eHealthInsurance.com, www.eHealthMedicare.com, www.Medicare.com and www.PlanPrescriber.com) or telephonically through its customer care centers. The Company also offers various online and pharmacy-based tools to help seniors navigate Medicare health insurance options, choose the right plan, and enroll in plans online or telephonically. It markets the availability of individual and family, small business and ancillary health insurance plans of various insurance carriers through its e-commerce platforms (www.eHealth.com and www.eHealthInsurance.com).

About Willis Towers Watson Public Limited

Willis Towers Watson Public Limited Company (Willis Towers Watson) is a holding company. The Company operates as a global advisory, broking and solutions company. It is engaged in offering risk management, insurance broking, consulting, technology and solutions, and private exchanges. The Company operates through eight segments: Willis International; Willis North America; Willis Capital, Wholesale & Reinsurance (CWR); Willis GB; Towers Watson Benefits; Towers Watson Exchange Solutions; Towers Watson Risk and Financial Services; and Towers Watson Talent and Rewards. The Willis GB segment comprises four business units: Property and Casualty, Transport, Financial Lines and Retail Networks. The Willis Capital Wholesale and Reinsurance segment includes Willis Re; Willis Capital Markets & Advisory; Willis’ wholesale business, and Willis Portfolio Underwriting Services. The Willis North America segment provides risk management, insurance brokerage and related risk services.

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