Highwoods Properties (NYSE:HIW) and Hospitality Properties Trust (NASDAQ:HPT) are both mid-cap finance companies, but which is the better stock? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their risk, profitability, analyst recommendations, institutional ownership, dividends, valuation and earnings.

Dividends

Highwoods Properties pays an annual dividend of $1.90 per share and has a dividend yield of 4.4%. Hospitality Properties Trust pays an annual dividend of $2.16 per share and has a dividend yield of 9.1%. Highwoods Properties pays out 55.1% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Hospitality Properties Trust pays out 58.5% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Both companies have healthy payout ratios and should be able to cover their dividend payments with earnings for the next several years. Highwoods Properties has increased its dividend for 2 consecutive years and Hospitality Properties Trust has increased its dividend for 7 consecutive years. Hospitality Properties Trust is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and longer track record of dividend growth.

Risk & Volatility

Highwoods Properties has a beta of 0.81, suggesting that its stock price is 19% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Hospitality Properties Trust has a beta of 0.98, suggesting that its stock price is 2% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

92.0% of Highwoods Properties shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 74.2% of Hospitality Properties Trust shares are held by institutional investors. 1.9% of Highwoods Properties shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 1.3% of Hospitality Properties Trust shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Highwoods Properties and Hospitality Properties Trust’s revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Highwoods Properties $720.03 million 6.16 $171.83 million $3.45 12.39
Hospitality Properties Trust $2.29 billion 1.71 $185.73 million $3.69 6.47

Hospitality Properties Trust has higher revenue and earnings than Highwoods Properties. Hospitality Properties Trust is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Highwoods Properties, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent recommendations for Highwoods Properties and Hospitality Properties Trust, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Highwoods Properties 0 1 2 0 2.67
Hospitality Properties Trust 0 1 1 0 2.50

Highwoods Properties presently has a consensus target price of $49.00, suggesting a potential upside of 14.67%. Hospitality Properties Trust has a consensus target price of $28.50, suggesting a potential upside of 19.45%. Given Hospitality Properties Trust’s higher possible upside, analysts plainly believe Hospitality Properties Trust is more favorable than Highwoods Properties.

Profitability

This table compares Highwoods Properties and Hospitality Properties Trust’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Highwoods Properties 18.79% 6.13% 2.86%
Hospitality Properties Trust -9.12% -7.74% -2.89%

Summary

Highwoods Properties beats Hospitality Properties Trust on 10 of the 17 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Highwoods Properties

Highwoods Properties, Inc., headquartered in Raleigh, is a publicly-traded (NYSE:HIW) real estate investment trust (“REIT”) and a member of the S&P MidCap 400 Index. The Company is a fully-integrated office REIT that owns, develops, acquires, leases and manages properties primarily in the best business districts (BBDs) of Atlanta, Greensboro, Memphis, Nashville, Orlando, Pittsburgh, Raleigh, Richmond and Tampa.

About Hospitality Properties Trust

Hospitality Properties Trust is a real estate investment trust, or REIT, which owns a diverse portfolio of hotels and travel centers located in 45 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Canada. HPT's properties are operated under long term management or lease agreements. HPT is managed by the operating subsidiary of The RMR Group Inc. (Nasdaq: RMR), an alternative asset management company that is headquartered in Newton, Massachusetts.

Receive News & Ratings for Highwoods Properties Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Highwoods Properties and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.