Farmland Partners (NYSE: FPI) and Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc. (NASDAQ:UNIT) are both finance companies, but which is the better business? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their profitability, dividends, institutional ownership, valuation, earnings, analyst recommendations and risk.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Farmland Partners and Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc.’s top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Farmland Partners $38.89 million 7.46 $24.04 million $0.12 74.34
Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc. $831.65 million 4.08 $681.10 million ($0.32) -60.41

Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc. has higher revenue and earnings than Farmland Partners. Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc. is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Farmland Partners, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Profitability

This table compares Farmland Partners and Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc.’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Farmland Partners 12.46% 1.66% 0.60%
Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc. -5.41% N/A -1.29%

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of recent ratings and recommmendations for Farmland Partners and Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc., as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Farmland Partners 0 3 1 0 2.25
Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc. 0 1 8 1 3.00

Farmland Partners presently has a consensus target price of $10.13, indicating a potential upside of 13.51%. Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc. has a consensus target price of $30.25, indicating a potential upside of 56.49%. Given Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc.’s stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc. is more favorable than Farmland Partners.

Volatility & Risk

Farmland Partners has a beta of 0.18, suggesting that its share price is 82% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc. has a beta of 1.2, suggesting that its share price is 20% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Institutional and Insider Ownership

39.8% of Farmland Partners shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 68.2% of Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc. shares are owned by institutional investors. 2.8% of Farmland Partners shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 0.4% of Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc. shares are owned 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.

Dividends

Farmland Partners pays an annual dividend of $0.51 per share and has a dividend yield of 5.7%. Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc. pays an annual dividend of $2.40 per share and has a dividend yield of 12.4%. Farmland Partners pays out 425.0% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc. pays out -750.0% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Farmland Partners has raised its dividend for 2 consecutive years. Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc. is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and lower payout ratio.

Summary

Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc. beats Farmland Partners on 10 of the 18 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Farmland Partners

Farmland Partners, Inc. is an internally managed real estate company. The Company owns and seeks to acquire farmland located in agricultural markets throughout North America. The Company is the sole member of the general partner of Farmland Partners Operating Partnership, LP (the Operating Partnership). All of the Company’s assets are held by, and its operations are primarily conducted through, the Operating Partnership and the subsidiaries of the Operating Partnership. The Company’s principal investment focus is on farmland located in agricultural markets throughout North America, however, it may seek to acquire farmland outside of North America. It also may acquire properties related to farming, such as grain storage facilities, grain elevators, feedlots, cold storage facilities, processing plants and distribution centers, as well as livestock farms or ranches. As of December 31, 2016, the Company owned approximately 115,489 acres, as well as eight grain storage facilities.

About Communications Sales & Leasing,Inc.

Uniti Group Inc., formerly Communications Sales & Leasing, Inc., is an internally managed real estate investment trust engaged in the acquisition and construction of infrastructure in the communications industry. The Company focuses on acquiring and constructing fiber optic broadband networks, wireless communications towers, copper and coaxial broadband networks and data centers. It operates in four segments: Leasing, Fiber Infrastructure, Towers and Consumer Competitive Local Exchange Carrier (Consumer CLEC). The Leasing segment includes Uniti Leasing. The Fiber Infrastructure segment includes Uniti Fiber business. The Towers segment includes Uniti Towers and its ground lease investments. The Consumer CLEC segment includes Talk America. As of July 3, 2017, the Company and its subsidiaries owned approximately 88,100 fiber network route miles, representing approximately 4.8 million fiber strand miles and approximately 231,900 route miles of copper cable lines across 32 states.

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