Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A) and Loews (L) Financial Survey

Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK.A) and Loews (NYSE:L) are both large-cap finance companies, but which is the superior business? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their institutional ownership, dividends, valuation, analyst recommendations, profitability, earnings and risk.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Berkshire Hathaway and Loews’ top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Berkshire Hathaway $223.60 billion 2.21 $24.07 billion $11,357.00 26.55
Loews $13.11 billion 1.30 $654.00 million $2.81 18.01

Berkshire Hathaway has higher revenue and earnings than Loews. Loews is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Berkshire Hathaway, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of current ratings for Berkshire Hathaway and Loews, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Berkshire Hathaway 0 1 1 0 2.50
Loews 1 0 0 0 1.00

Berkshire Hathaway presently has a consensus price target of $295,000.00, indicating a potential downside of 2.16%. Loews has a consensus price target of $35.00, indicating a potential downside of 30.86%. Given Berkshire Hathaway’s stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, equities research analysts clearly believe Berkshire Hathaway is more favorable than Loews.

Dividends

Loews pays an annual dividend of $0.25 per share and has a dividend yield of 0.5%. Berkshire Hathaway does not pay a dividend. Loews pays out 8.9% of its earnings in the form of a dividend.

Profitability

This table compares Berkshire Hathaway and Loews’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Berkshire Hathaway 7.73% 5.17% 2.36%
Loews 7.04% 4.08% 1.25%

Insider & Institutional Ownership

10.0% of Berkshire Hathaway shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 59.3% of Loews shares are owned by institutional investors. 5.4% of Berkshire Hathaway shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 11.8% of Loews shares are owned by 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.

Volatility and Risk

Berkshire Hathaway has a beta of 0.86, indicating that its stock price is 14% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Loews has a beta of 0.74, indicating that its stock price is 26% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Summary

Berkshire Hathaway beats Loews on 13 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Berkshire Hathaway

Berkshire Hathaway Inc. is a holding company owning subsidiaries engaged in various business activities. Its segments include Insurance, such as GEICO, Berkshire Hathaway Primary Group, General Re Corporation and Berkshire Hathaway Reinsurance Group; Burlington Northern Santa Fe, LLC, which is engaged in the operation of the railroad system; Berkshire Hathaway Energy, which includes regulated electric and gas utility; Manufacturing, which includes manufacturers of various products, including industrial, consumer and building products; McLane Company, which is engaged in the wholesale distribution of groceries and non-food items; Service and retailing, which includes providers of various services, including fractional aircraft ownership programs, aviation pilot training and various retailing businesses, and Finance and financial products, which includes manufactured housing and related consumer financing, transportation equipment, manufacturing and leasing, and furniture leasing.

About Loews

Loews Corporation is a holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries, is engaged in commercial property and casualty insurance; operation of offshore oil and gas drilling rigs; transportation and storage of natural gas and natural gas liquids, and operation of a chain of hotels. The Company has five segments consisted of its four individual operating subsidiaries, CNA Financial Corporation (CNA), Diamond Offshore Drilling, Inc. (Diamond Offshore), Boardwalk Pipeline Partners, LP (Boardwalk Pipeline) and Loews Hotels Holding Corporation (Loews Hotels), and the Corporate segment. CNA’s insurance products include commercial property and casualty coverages, including surety. CNA’s services include risk management, information services, warranty and claims administration. CNA’s core business, commercial property and casualty insurance operations include Specialty, Commercial and International lines of business.

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