Atwood Oceanics (NYSE: ATW) and Pacific Drilling (OTCMKTS:PACDQ) are both small-cap energy companies, but which is the superior investment? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, dividends, valuation, earnings, profitability, risk and institutional ownership.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Atwood Oceanics and Pacific Drilling’s revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio NetIncome Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Atwood Oceanics N/A N/A N/A ($0.21) -44.38
Pacific Drilling $769.47 million 0.02 -$37.15 million ($20.58) -0.03

Atwood Oceanics has higher revenue, but lower earnings than Pacific Drilling. Atwood Oceanics is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Pacific Drilling, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of recent recommendations for Atwood Oceanics and Pacific Drilling, as provided by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Atwood Oceanics 3 12 4 0 2.05
Pacific Drilling 0 0 0 0 N/A

Atwood Oceanics presently has a consensus target price of $11.23, suggesting a potential upside of 20.52%. Given Atwood Oceanics’ higher probable upside, equities research analysts plainly believe Atwood Oceanics is more favorable than Pacific Drilling.

Profitability

This table compares Atwood Oceanics and Pacific Drilling’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Atwood Oceanics -3.71% -0.51% -0.36%
Pacific Drilling -101.35% -17.63% -7.68%

Institutional & Insider Ownership

92.0% of Atwood Oceanics shares are owned by institutional investors. 1.2% of Atwood Oceanics shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, large money managers and endowments believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Summary

Atwood Oceanics beats Pacific Drilling on 8 of the 9 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Atwood Oceanics

Atwood Oceanics, Inc. is an offshore drilling company engaged in the drilling and completion of exploration and development wells for the global oil and gas industry. The Company owns various types of drilling rigs, such as Ultra-Deepwater Rigs, Deepwater Semisubmersibles and Jackups. Its Ultra-deepwater Rigs and Deepwater Semisubmersibles include Atwood Achiever, Atwood Archer, Atwood Admiral, Atwood Advantage, Atwood Condor, Atwood Eagle and Atwood Osprey. Its Jackup Rigs included Atwood Mako, Atwood Manta, Atwood Aurora, Atwood Beacon and Atwood Orca. The Atwood Mako and Atwood Manta, both approximately 400-foot water depth Pacific Class jackup rigs, are operating offshore Vietnam and offshore Thailand. The Atwood Aurora, an approximately 350-foot water depth jackup, is operating offshore West Africa. The Atwood Beacon, an approximately 400-foot water depth jackup, is operating in the Mediterranean Sea.

About Pacific Drilling

Pacific Drilling S.A. is an international offshore drilling contractor. The Company provides offshore drilling services to the oil and natural gas industry through the use of high-specification rigs. The Company’s primary business is to contract its high-specification rigs, related equipment and work crews, primarily on a day rate basis, to drill wells for its clients. The Company is engaged in drillships segment. The Company focuses on the high-specification segment of the floating rig market. The Company considers high-specification requirements to include rigs in water depths of approximately 7,500 feet or projects requiring advanced operating capabilities, such as hook-loads (>800 tons), accommodations (over 200 beds), mud storage and pumping capacity, and deck-load and space capabilities. The Company’s contract drillships operate in the deepwater regions of the United States, Gulf of Mexico and Nigeria.

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