DeVry Education Group (NYSE: ATGE) and Career Education Corporation (NASDAQ:CECO) are both consumer discretionary companies, but which is the superior investment? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their earnings, risk, analyst recommendations, valuation, institutional ownership, dividends and profitability.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

75.4% of Career Education Corporation shares are held by institutional investors. 3.0% of DeVry Education Group shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 5.0% of Career Education Corporation shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, large money managers and endowments believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Dividends

DeVry Education Group pays an annual dividend of $0.18 per share and has a dividend yield of 0.5%. Career Education Corporation does not pay a dividend. DeVry Education Group pays out 9.4% of its earnings in the form of a dividend.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares DeVry Education Group and Career Education Corporation’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
DeVry Education Group $1.81 billion 1.23 $313.39 million $1.91 18.80
Career Education Corporation $631.21 million 1.17 $42.44 million ($0.36) -29.64

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

Risk and Volatility

DeVry Education Group has a beta of 0.84, suggesting that its stock price is 16% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Career Education Corporation has a beta of 2.71, suggesting that its stock price is 171% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Profitability

This table compares DeVry Education Group and Career Education Corporation’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
DeVry Education Group 6.76% 10.93% 7.71%
Career Education Corporation -3.82% 3.73% 2.35%

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent recommendations for DeVry Education Group and Career Education Corporation, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
DeVry Education Group 0 2 2 0 2.50
Career Education Corporation 0 1 1 0 2.50

DeVry Education Group presently has a consensus price target of $35.67, suggesting a potential downside of 0.65%. Career Education Corporation has a consensus price target of $13.00, suggesting a potential upside of 21.84%. Given Career Education Corporation’s higher possible upside, analysts plainly believe Career Education Corporation is more favorable than DeVry Education Group.

Summary

DeVry Education Group beats Career Education Corporation on 9 of the 14 factors compared between the two stocks.

DeVry Education Group Company Profile

Adtalem Global Education Inc., formerly DeVry Education Group Inc. (DeVry Group) is a global provider of educational services. DeVry Group’s focuses on empowering its students to achieve their educational and career goals. DeVry Group’s institutions offer a range of programs in healthcare, technology, business, accounting, finance and law. The Company operates in three segments: Medical and Healthcare; International and Professional Education, and Business, Technology and Management. Medical and Healthcare includes DeVry Medical International, Chamberlain College of Nursing (Chamberlain) and Carrington College. International and Professional Education consists of DeVry Brasil and Becker Professional Education. Business, Technology and Management consists of DeVry University. As of June 30, 2016, DMI operated three institutions: American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine (AUC), Ross University School of Medicine (RUSM) and Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine.

Career Education Corporation Company Profile

Career Education Corporation, through its colleges, institutions and universities, offers education to students in a range of career-oriented disciplines through online, on-ground and hybrid learning programs. The Company’s American InterContinental University (AIU) and Colorado Technical University (CTU) provide degree programs through the master’s or doctoral level as well as associate and bachelor’s levels. The Company operates through four segments: CTU, AIU, Culinary Arts and Transitional Group. Its University group consists of AIU and CTU, which serve students online with career-focused degree programs. Its Career Colleges Group consists of Culinary Arts and Transitional Group segments. The Culinary Arts segment includes Le Cordon Bleu institutions in North America (LCB), which offer hands-on educational programs in the career-oriented disciplines of culinary arts and patisserie and baking in the commercial-grade kitchens of Le Cordon Bleu.

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