Air Methods Corp (NASDAQ: AIRM) and Acadia Healthcare (NASDAQ:ACHC) are both healthcare companies, but which is the better investment? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their profitability, earnings, institutional ownership, dividends, analyst recommendations, valuation and risk.

Profitability

This table compares Air Methods Corp and Acadia Healthcare’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Air Methods Corp 6.67% 14.18% 4.43%
Acadia Healthcare 0.30% 8.69% 3.16%

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of current recommendations and price targets for Air Methods Corp and Acadia Healthcare, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Air Methods Corp 0 3 1 0 2.25
Acadia Healthcare 0 2 8 1 2.91

Air Methods Corp currently has a consensus target price of $42.50, indicating a potential downside of 1.05%. Acadia Healthcare has a consensus target price of $56.56, indicating a potential upside of 29.66%. Given Acadia Healthcare’s stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Acadia Healthcare is more favorable than Air Methods Corp.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Air Methods Corp and Acadia Healthcare’s gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Air Methods Corp N/A N/A N/A $2.59 16.58
Acadia Healthcare $2.83 billion 1.35 $574.61 million $0.09 484.67

Acadia Healthcare has higher revenue and earnings than Air Methods Corp. Air Methods Corp is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Acadia Healthcare, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Risk and Volatility

Air Methods Corp has a beta of 1.46, meaning that its stock price is 46% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Acadia Healthcare has a beta of 1.07, meaning that its stock price is 7% more volatile than the S&P 500.

About Air Methods Corp

Air Methods Corporation is engaged in providing air medical emergency transport services and systems throughout the United States. The Company’s segments include Air Medical Services (AMS), Tourism and United Rotorcraft (UR) Division. As of December 31, 2016, its AMS Division provided air medical transportation services in 41 states to the general population as an independent service (also called community-based services) and to hospitals or other institutions under exclusive operating agreements (also called hospital-based services). It transports persons requiring intensive medical care from either the scene of an accident or general care hospitals to skilled trauma centers or tertiary care centers. As of December 31, 2016, its Air Medical Services Division operated 394 helicopters and 31 fixed wing aircrafts under both Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) and Visual Flight Rules (VFR). As of December 31, 2016, its Tourism Division operated 63 helicopters and two fixed wing aircrafts.

About Acadia Healthcare

Acadia Healthcare Company, Inc. is a provider of behavioral healthcare services, with operations in the United States and the United Kingdom. The Company focuses on acquiring and developing behavioral healthcare facilities. The Company operates through two segments: U.S. Facilities and U.K. Facilities. The Company is engaged in operating acute inpatient psychiatric facilities, specialty treatment facilities, residential treatment centers and facilities providing outpatient behavioral healthcare services. As of December 31, 2016, the U.S. Facilities segment included 208 behavioral healthcare facilities with approximately 8,500 beds in 39 states and Puerto Rico, and the U.K. Facilities segment included 365 behavioral healthcare facilities with approximately 8,600 beds in the United Kingdom. As of December 31, 2016, the Company had operated 573 behavioral healthcare facilities with approximately 17,100 beds in 39 states, the United Kingdom and Puerto Rico.

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