Ameriprise Financial Services (NYSE: AMP) and Noah Holdings (NYSE:NOAH) are both finance companies, but which is the superior investment? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their institutional ownership, profitability, earnings, risk, valuation, dividends and analyst recommendations.

Dividends

Ameriprise Financial Services pays an annual dividend of $3.32 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.2%. Noah Holdings does not pay a dividend. Ameriprise Financial Services pays out 37.8% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Ameriprise Financial Services has raised its dividend for 7 consecutive years.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

79.4% of Ameriprise Financial Services shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 41.5% of Noah Holdings shares are held by institutional investors. 1.5% of Ameriprise Financial Services shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Ameriprise Financial Services and Noah Holdings’ top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Ameriprise Financial Services $12.00 billion 1.86 $2.90 billion $8.78 16.93
Noah Holdings $409.59 million 3.18 $122.75 million $1.73 18.99

Ameriprise Financial Services has higher revenue and earnings than Noah Holdings. Ameriprise Financial Services is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Noah Holdings, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Volatility and Risk

Ameriprise Financial Services has a beta of 1.88, meaning that its stock price is 88% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Noah Holdings has a beta of 2.44, meaning that its stock price is 144% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Profitability

This table compares Ameriprise Financial Services and Noah Holdings’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Ameriprise Financial Services 11.81% 26.54% 1.20%
Noah Holdings 29.39% 18.42% 11.94%

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and price targets for Ameriprise Financial Services and Noah Holdings, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Ameriprise Financial Services 1 4 4 0 2.33
Noah Holdings 0 0 1 0 3.00

Ameriprise Financial Services currently has a consensus target price of $145.85, indicating a potential downside of 1.90%. Noah Holdings has a consensus target price of $29.00, indicating a potential downside of 11.75%. Given Ameriprise Financial Services’ higher probable upside, equities research analysts clearly believe Ameriprise Financial Services is more favorable than Noah Holdings.

Summary

Ameriprise Financial Services beats Noah Holdings on 10 of the 17 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Ameriprise Financial Services

Ameriprise Financial, Inc. is a financial services company that offers financial solutions to individual and institutional clients. The Company operates in five segments: Advice & Wealth Management; Asset Management; Annuities; Protection, and Corporate & Other. The Company uses Ameriprise Financial as its enterprise brand, as well as the name of its advisor network and certain of its retail products and services. The retail products and services that use the Ameriprise Financial brand include those that it provides through its advisors (financial planning, investment advisory accounts and retail brokerage services) and products and services that the Company markets directly to consumers or through affinity groups (personal auto and home insurance). The Company uses its RiverSource brand for its annuity and protection products issued by the RiverSource Life companies, including its life and disability income insurance products.

About Noah Holdings

Noah Holdings Limited is a wealth management service provider with a focus on global wealth investment and asset allocation services for high net worth individuals and enterprises in China. The Company operates through three segments: wealth management, asset management and Internet finance. It also provides Internet finance services to clients in China. It provides direct access to China’s high net worth population. With approximately 1,100 relationship managers in over 130 branch offices, its coverage network includes China’s regions where high net worth population is concentrated, including the Yangtze River Delta, the Pearl River Delta, the Bohai Rim and other regions. Its product offerings consist primarily of over-the-counter (OTC) wealth management and OTC asset management products, mutual fund products and asset management plans originated in China and designed to cater to the needs of China’s high net worth population.

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