Markel Corporation (NYSE: MKL) and Endurance Specialty Holdings (NYSE:ENH) are both finance companies, but which is the superior business? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their institutional ownership, profitability, dividends, valuation, analyst recommendations, risk and earnings.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of recent recommendations and price targets for Markel Corporation and Endurance Specialty Holdings, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Markel Corporation 0 3 1 0 2.25
Endurance Specialty Holdings 0 0 0 0 N/A

Markel Corporation presently has a consensus price target of $1,066.67, suggesting a potential downside of 1.63%. Given Markel Corporation’s higher probable upside, equities analysts clearly believe Markel Corporation is more favorable than Endurance Specialty Holdings.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Markel Corporation and Endurance Specialty Holdings’ top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Markel Corporation $5.75 billion 2.62 $948.88 million $4.50 240.96
Endurance Specialty Holdings N/A N/A N/A $6.00 15.50

Markel Corporation has higher revenue and earnings than Endurance Specialty Holdings. Endurance Specialty Holdings is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Markel Corporation, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Profitability

This table compares Markel Corporation and Endurance Specialty Holdings’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Markel Corporation 1.60% 0.83% 0.27%
Endurance Specialty Holdings 4.41% 1.29% 0.72%

Dividends

Endurance Specialty Holdings pays an annual dividend of $1.52 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.6%. Markel Corporation does not pay a dividend. Endurance Specialty Holdings pays out 25.3% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Markel Corporation has increased its dividend for 6 consecutive years.

Risk and Volatility

Markel Corporation has a beta of 1.03, suggesting that its share price is 3% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Endurance Specialty Holdings has a beta of 0.56, suggesting that its share price is 44% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

76.4% of Markel Corporation shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 82.7% of Endurance Specialty Holdings shares are held by institutional investors. 2.5% of Markel Corporation shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 5.8% of Endurance Specialty Holdings shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, hedge funds and large money managers believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Summary

Endurance Specialty Holdings beats Markel Corporation on 7 of the 13 factors compared between the two stocks.

Markel Corporation Company Profile

Markel Corporation is a financial holding company serving a range of markets. The Company’s principal business markets and underwrites specialty insurance products. It monitors and reports its ongoing underwriting operations in three segments: U.S. Insurance, International Insurance and Reinsurance. The Company, through its subsidiary Markel Ventures, Inc. (Markel Ventures), owns interests in various industrial and service businesses that operate outside of the specialty insurance marketplace. The U.S. Insurance segment includes all direct business and facultative placements written by its insurance subsidiaries domiciled in the United States. The International Insurance segment includes all direct business and facultative placements written by its insurance subsidiaries domiciled outside of the United States, including its syndicate at Lloyd’s of London (Lloyd’s). The Reinsurance segment includes all treaty reinsurance written across the Company.

Endurance Specialty Holdings Company Profile

Endurance Specialty Holdings Ltd. is a holding company. The Company, through its operating subsidiaries in Bermuda, the United States and the United Kingdom, focuses on underwriting specialty lines of personal and commercial property, and casualty insurance and reinsurance. It operates through two segments: Insurance and Reinsurance. In the Insurance segment, it writes agriculture, casualty and other specialty, professional lines, and property, marine/energy and aviation insurance. In the Reinsurance segment, it writes catastrophe, property, casualty, professional lines and specialty reinsurance. Its Insurance and Reinsurance segments both include property-related coverages, which provide insurance or reinsurance of an insurable interest in tangible property for property loss, damage or loss of use. In addition, its Insurance and Reinsurance segments include various casualty insurance and reinsurance coverages, which are concerned with the losses caused by injuries to third parties.

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