Otter Tail Corporation (NASDAQ: OTTR) and Cleco Corporate Holdings (NYSE:CNL) are both utilities companies, but which is the better stock? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their dividends, institutional ownership, earnings, profitability, analyst recommendations, risk and valuation.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Otter Tail Corporation and Cleco Corporate Holdings’ top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Otter Tail Corporation $820.02 million 2.07 $191.22 million $1.72 24.94
Cleco Corporate Holdings N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A

Otter Tail Corporation has higher revenue and earnings than Cleco Corporate Holdings.


This table compares Otter Tail Corporation and Cleco Corporate Holdings’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Otter Tail Corporation 8.35% 10.14% 3.57%
Cleco Corporate Holdings 8.24% 5.05% 1.60%


Otter Tail Corporation pays an annual dividend of $1.28 per share and has a dividend yield of 3.0%. Cleco Corporate Holdings does not pay a dividend. Otter Tail Corporation pays out 74.4% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Cleco Corporate Holdings has raised its dividend for 7 consecutive years.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of current ratings and recommmendations for Otter Tail Corporation and Cleco Corporate Holdings, as reported by

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Otter Tail Corporation 0 1 1 0 2.50
Cleco Corporate Holdings 0 0 0 0 N/A

Otter Tail Corporation presently has a consensus price target of $41.00, suggesting a potential downside of 4.43%. Given Otter Tail Corporation’s higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Otter Tail Corporation is more favorable than Cleco Corporate Holdings.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

40.6% of Otter Tail Corporation shares are held by institutional investors. 1.4% of Otter Tail Corporation shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.


Otter Tail Corporation beats Cleco Corporate Holdings on 9 of the 11 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Otter Tail Corporation

Otter Tail Corporation is a holding company. The Company operates through three segments: Electric, Manufacturing and Plastics. The Electric segment includes the production, transmission, distribution and sale of electric energy in Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota by Otter Tail Power Company (OTP). The Manufacturing segment consists of businesses in manufacturing activities, such as contract machining, metal parts stamping, fabrication and painting, and production of material and handling trays and horticultural containers. These businesses have manufacturing facilities in Georgia, Illinois and Minnesota and sell products primarily in the United States. The Plastics segment consists of businesses producing polyvinyl chloride (PVC) pipe at plants in North Dakota and Arizona. The PVC pipe is sold primarily in the upper Midwest and Southwest regions of the United States. The Company’s manufacturing and plastic pipe businesses are owned by its subsidiary, Varistar Corporation.

About Cleco Corporate Holdings

Cleco Corporate Holdings LLC, formerly Cleco Corporation, is a public utility holding company. The Company’s segments include Cleco Power and Other. Cleco Power is a regulated electric utility company that owns over 10 generating units with a total nameplate capacity of approximately 3,330 megawatts (MW) and serves approximately 287,000 customers in Louisiana through its retail business and supplies wholesale power in Louisiana and Mississippi. The Company, through its subsidiaries, owns one transmission substation in Louisiana and one transmission substation in Mississippi. Cleco Power is engaged in the generation, transmission, distribution and sale of electricity within Louisiana. It owns natural gas pipelines and interconnections at all of its generating facilities, which allow it to access various natural gas supply markets and maintain an economical fuel supply for its customers. The Company holds investments in its subsidiary, Cleco Power LLC (Cleco Power).

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