Northern Trust Corporation (NASDAQ: NTRS) and Oaktree Capital Group (NYSE:OAK) are both mid-cap finance companies, but which is the better stock? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their valuation, dividends, earnings, risk, profitability, analyst recommendations and institutional ownership.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Northern Trust Corporation and Oaktree Capital Group’s top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Northern Trust Corporation $5.09 billion 4.15 $1.01 billion $4.40 21.00
Oaktree Capital Group $1.51 billion 2.03 $497.59 million $4.57 10.46

Northern Trust Corporation has higher revenue and earnings than Oaktree Capital Group. Oaktree Capital Group is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Northern Trust Corporation, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Dividends

Northern Trust Corporation pays an annual dividend of $1.68 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.8%. Oaktree Capital Group pays an annual dividend of $5.24 per share and has a dividend yield of 11.0%. Northern Trust Corporation pays out 38.2% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Oaktree Capital Group pays out 114.7% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future.

Profitability

This table compares Northern Trust Corporation and Oaktree Capital Group’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Northern Trust Corporation 20.21% 12.08% 0.88%
Oaktree Capital Group 19.17% 20.11% 4.95%

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and recommmendations for Northern Trust Corporation and Oaktree Capital Group, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Northern Trust Corporation 1 6 3 1 2.36
Oaktree Capital Group 1 5 1 0 2.00

Northern Trust Corporation presently has a consensus price target of $94.64, indicating a potential upside of 2.43%. Oaktree Capital Group has a consensus price target of $47.20, indicating a potential downside of 1.26%. Given Northern Trust Corporation’s stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Northern Trust Corporation is more favorable than Oaktree Capital Group.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

81.9% of Northern Trust Corporation shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 21.8% of Oaktree Capital Group shares are owned by institutional investors. 1.3% of Northern Trust Corporation shares are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Volatility & Risk

Northern Trust Corporation has a beta of 0.93, suggesting that its share price is 7% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Oaktree Capital Group has a beta of 0.59, suggesting that its share price is 41% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Summary

Northern Trust Corporation beats Oaktree Capital Group on 13 of the 17 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Northern Trust Corporation

Northern Trust Corporation is a financial holding company. The Company provides asset servicing, fund administration, asset management, fiduciary and banking solutions for corporations, institutions, families and individuals across the world. Its segments include Corporate & Institutional Services (C&IS), Wealth Management, and Treasury and Other. The C&IS segment is a provider of asset servicing and related services to corporate and public retirement funds, foundations, endowments, fund managers, insurance companies, sovereign wealth funds and other institutional investors around the globe. The Wealth Management segment provides trust, investment management, custody and philanthropic services; financial consulting; guardianship and estate administration; family business consulting; family financial education; brokerage services, and private and business banking. It conducts its business through various subsidiaries.

About Oaktree Capital Group

Oaktree Capital Group, LLC (Oaktree) is an investment manager specializing in alternative investments. The Company operates through investment management segment, which consists of the investment management services that the Company provides to its clients. The Company manages investments in a range of strategies within approximately six asset classes, which include corporate debt, convertible securities, distressed debt, control investing, real estate and listed equities. The Funds managed by Oaktree include commingled funds, separate accounts and collateralized loan obligation vehicles (CLOs). The commingled funds include open-end and closed-end limited partnerships in which it makes an investment and for which it serves as the general partner. CLOs are structured finance vehicles in which the Company typically makes an investment and for which it serves as collateral manager. Its clientele includes the United States pension plans and corporations and/or their pension funds.

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