International Shipholding (NYSE: ISH) and Matson (NYSE:MATX) are both small-cap services companies, but which is the better stock? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their valuation, risk, institutional ownership, analyst recommendations, earnings, profitability and dividends.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

84.2% of Matson shares are held by institutional investors. 2.6% of Matson shares are held 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.

Profitability

This table compares International Shipholding and Matson’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
International Shipholding -15.98% -47.90% -10.59%
Matson 3.76% 16.10% 3.69%

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of current ratings and recommmendations for International Shipholding and Matson, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
International Shipholding 0 0 0 0 N/A
Matson 1 2 1 0 2.00

Matson has a consensus price target of $25.00, suggesting a potential downside of 4.14%. Given Matson’s higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Matson is more favorable than International Shipholding.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares International Shipholding and Matson’s top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
International Shipholding N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Matson $2.01 billion 0.56 $225.70 million $1.73 15.08

Matson has higher revenue and earnings than International Shipholding.

Dividends

Matson pays an annual dividend of $0.80 per share and has a dividend yield of 3.1%. International Shipholding does not pay a dividend. Matson pays out 46.2% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Matson has raised its dividend for 4 consecutive years.

Summary

Matson beats International Shipholding on 10 of the 11 factors compared between the two stocks.

International Shipholding Company Profile

International Shipholding Corporation is a holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries, operates a diversified fleet of the United States and international-flagged vessels that provide domestic and international maritime transportation services under medium to long-term time charters or contracts of affreightment. It operates through three segments: Jones Act, which deploys over two bulk carriers, over three integrated tug or barge units, each consisting of one tug and one barge, and one harbor tug acquired; one belt self-unloading coal carrier to transport coal under a time charter, and one vessel that transports molten sulfur under a contract of affreightment; Pure Car Truck Carriers (PCTCs), which deploys over five PCTCs, including over four United States flag vessels and one international-flagged vessel, and Rail-Ferry, which uses its two roll-on or roll-off special purpose double deck vessels that carry rail cars between the United States Gulf Coast and Mexico.

Matson Company Profile

Matson, Inc., through its subsidiaries, operates as an ocean cargo carrier. The company operates in two segments, Ocean Transportation and Logistics. The Ocean Transportation segment offers ocean transportation services to the domestic economies of Hawaii, Alaska, and Guam, as well as to other island economies in Micronesia and in the South Pacific. This segment also operates an expedited service from China to Long Beach, California; and provides container and conventional freight services between New Zealand and other South Pacific Islands including Fiji, Samoa, American Samoa, Tonga, the Cook Islands, Niue, Vanuatu, Nauru, and the Solomon Islands. It primarily transports dry containers of mixed commodities, refrigerated commodities, packaged foods and beverages, building materials, automobiles, and household goods; general sustenance cargo; and garments, footwear, and other retail merchandise. This segment also offers container stevedoring, container equipment maintenance, and other terminal services on the islands of Oahu, Hawaii, Maui, and Kauai, as well as in the Alaska locations of Anchorage, Kodiak, and Dutch Harbor. It operates a fleet of 22 owned and 5 chartered vessels. The Logistics segment provides multimodal transportation services, including domestic and international rail intermodal service; long-haul and regional highway brokerage, specialized hauling, flat-bed and project work, less-than-truckload, and expedited freight; and supply chain management, and warehousing and distribution services. This segment also offers freight forwarding, consolidation, customs brokerage, purchase order management, and non-vessel operating common carrier services. The company was formerly known as Alexander & Baldwin Holdings, Inc. and changed its name to Matson, Inc. in June 2012. Matson, Inc. was founded in 1882 and is headquartered in Honolulu, Hawaii.

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