National Western Life Group (NASDAQ: NWLI) and Emergent Capital (OTCMKTS:EMGC) are both small-cap finance companies, but which is the superior stock? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their earnings, valuation, analyst recommendations, risk, dividends, institutional ownership and profitability.

Dividends

National Western Life Group pays an annual dividend of $0.36 per share and has a dividend yield of 0.1%. Emergent Capital does not pay a dividend. National Western Life Group pays out 1.3% of its earnings in the form of a dividend.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares National Western Life Group and Emergent Capital’s top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
National Western Life Group $682.37 million 1.74 $100.89 million $26.70 12.25
Emergent Capital $1.12 million 59.86 -$49.68 million N/A N/A

National Western Life Group has higher revenue and earnings than Emergent Capital.

Profitability

This table compares National Western Life Group and Emergent Capital’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
National Western Life Group 11.31% 4.75% 0.70%
Emergent Capital -42.49% -12.80% -3.98%

Risk & Volatility

National Western Life Group has a beta of 1.47, indicating that its stock price is 47% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Emergent Capital has a beta of 0.05, indicating that its stock price is 95% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of current ratings and recommmendations for National Western Life Group and Emergent Capital, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
National Western Life Group 0 0 0 0 N/A
Emergent Capital 0 0 1 0 3.00

Insider & Institutional Ownership

79.7% of National Western Life Group shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 0.3% of Emergent Capital shares are held by institutional investors. 1.0% of National Western Life Group shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 33.3% of Emergent Capital shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Summary

National Western Life Group beats Emergent Capital on 8 of the 12 factors compared between the two stocks.

About National Western Life Group

National Western Life Insurance Company (National Western) is a stock life insurance company. The Company operates in two segments: Domestic Insurance Operations and International Insurance Operations. The products marketed under domestic insurance operations are annuities, universal life insurance and traditional life insurance, which include both term and whole life products. National Western’s international operations focus on foreign nationals in upper socioeconomic classes. The Company provides life insurance products for the savings and protection needs of approximately 126,700 policyholders and for the asset accumulation and retirement needs of 139,100 annuity contract holders. National Western offers a portfolio of individual whole life, universal life and term insurance plans, and annuities, including supplementary riders.

About Emergent Capital

Emergent Capital, Inc., formerly Imperial Holdings, Inc., is a specialty finance company that invests in asset classes, primarily life settlements. The Company, through its subsidiary companies, owns a portfolio of approximately 630 life insurance policies (life settlements). The Company purchases individual policies and portfolios of life insurance policies and manages those assets based on actuarial and market data. The Company provides customized liquidity solutions to owners of illiquid financial assets in two markets, which include life finance and structured settlements. The Company focuses on lending to outright purchases of portfolios, to tertiary trades, as well as individual secondary market purchases. The Company invests in short and long-term life settlement investments.

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