TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC (NYSE: TPVG) and Clearbridge Energy MLP Total Return Fund (NYSE:CTR) are both small-cap financials companies, but which is the superior business? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their institutional ownership, earnings, dividends, analyst recommendations, valuation, risk and profitability.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC and Clearbridge Energy MLP Total Return Fund’s gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC $43.63 million 5.26 $11.12 million N/A N/A
Clearbridge Energy MLP Total Return Fund N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A

TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC has higher revenue and earnings than Clearbridge Energy MLP Total Return Fund.

Profitability

This table compares TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC and Clearbridge Energy MLP Total Return Fund’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC 43.72% 12.05% 5.99%
Clearbridge Energy MLP Total Return Fund N/A N/A N/A

Dividends

TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC pays an annual dividend of $1.44 per share and has a dividend yield of 11.1%. Clearbridge Energy MLP Total Return Fund does not pay a dividend.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of current recommendations for TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC and Clearbridge Energy MLP Total Return Fund, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC 0 1 1 0 2.50
Clearbridge Energy MLP Total Return Fund 0 0 0 0 N/A

TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC presently has a consensus price target of $14.00, suggesting a potential upside of 8.11%. Given TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC’s higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC is more favorable than Clearbridge Energy MLP Total Return Fund.

Risk & Volatility

TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC has a beta of 1.36, indicating that its stock price is 36% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Clearbridge Energy MLP Total Return Fund has a beta of 1.39, indicating that its stock price is 39% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

33.8% of TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC shares are held by institutional investors. 1.3% of TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, hedge funds and large money managers believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Summary

TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC beats Clearbridge Energy MLP Total Return Fund on 9 of the 10 factors compared between the two stocks.

TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC Company Profile

TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC Corp. is a closed-end, non-diversified management investment company. The Company’s investment objective is to maximize its total return to stockholders primarily in the form of current income and, to a lesser extent, capital appreciation by primarily lending with warrants to venture growth stage companies focused in technology, life sciences and other high growth industries, which are backed by TriplePoint Capital LLC’s (TPC) select group of venture capital investors. The Company targets investment opportunities in venture growth stage companies backed by venture capital investors. The Company originates and invests primarily in loans that have a secured collateral position and are used by venture growth stage companies to finance their continued expansion and growth, equipment financings and, on a select basis, revolving loans. The Company is managed by TPVG Advisers LLC.

Clearbridge Energy MLP Total Return Fund Company Profile

ClearBridge Energy MLP Total Return Fund Inc. is a non-diversified, closed-end management investment company. The Fund’s investment objective is to provide a high level of total return, consisting of cash distributions and capital appreciation. The Fund seeks to achieve its objective by investing primarily in energy master limited partnerships (MLPs). Under normal market conditions, the Fund invests at least 80% of its managed assets in energy MLPs. Energy entities are engaged in the business of exploring, developing, producing, gathering, transporting, processing, storing, refining, distributing, mining or marketing natural gas, natural gas liquids (including propane), crude oil, refined petroleum products or coal. Legg Mason Partners Fund Advisor, LLC (LMPFA) is the Fund’s investment manager and ClearBridge Investments, LLC is the Fund’s subadvisor.

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