Critical Survey: Artesian Resources (ARTNA) and Its Competitors

Artesian Resources (NASDAQ: ARTNA) is one of 17 publicly-traded companies in the “UTIL-WATER SPLY” industry, but how does it weigh in compared to its peers? We will compare Artesian Resources to related companies based on the strength of its risk, profitability, institutional ownership, earnings, valuation, dividends and analyst recommendations.

Analyst Ratings

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This is a breakdown of recent recommendations for Artesian Resources and its peers, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Artesian Resources 0 1 0 0 2.00
Artesian Resources Competitors 94 266 284 17 2.34

Artesian Resources presently has a consensus price target of $41.00, indicating a potential upside of 13.23%. As a group, “UTIL-WATER SPLY” companies have a potential upside of 6.43%. Given Artesian Resources’ higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Artesian Resources is more favorable than its peers.

Risk and Volatility

Artesian Resources has a beta of 0.17, suggesting that its share price is 83% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Artesian Resources’ peers have a beta of 0.46, suggesting that their average share price is 54% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Profitability

This table compares Artesian Resources and its peers’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Artesian Resources 17.00% 10.36% 3.13%
Artesian Resources Competitors 8.27% 9.06% 2.69%

Dividends

Artesian Resources pays an annual dividend of $0.94 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.6%. Artesian Resources pays out 62.3% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. As a group, “UTIL-WATER SPLY” companies pay a dividend yield of 2.2% and pay out 55.9% of their earnings in the form of a dividend.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Artesian Resources and its peers gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Net Income Price/Earnings Ratio
Artesian Resources $82.24 million $13.98 million 23.98
Artesian Resources Competitors $3.27 billion $157.36 million 11.91

Artesian Resources’ peers have higher revenue and earnings than Artesian Resources. Artesian Resources is trading at a higher price-to-earnings ratio than its peers, indicating that it is currently more expensive than other companies in its industry.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

38.8% of Artesian Resources shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 43.1% of shares of all “UTIL-WATER SPLY” companies are owned by institutional investors. 20.6% of Artesian Resources shares are owned by company insiders. Comparatively, 10.5% of shares of all “UTIL-WATER SPLY” companies are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Summary

Artesian Resources peers beat Artesian Resources on 8 of the 15 factors compared.

About Artesian Resources

Artesian Resources Corporation is a holding company. The Company’s subsidiaries offer water, wastewater and other services on the Delmarva Peninsula. The Company distributes and sells water, including water for public and private fire protection, to residential, commercial, industrial, municipal and utility customers in the states of Delaware, Maryland and Pennsylvania. The Company also provides wastewater services to customers in Delaware. In addition, the Company provides contract water and wastewater operations, and water, sewer and internal Service Line Protection Plans. As of December 31, 2016, the Company was the holding company of five regulated public utilities: Artesian Water Company, Inc., Artesian Water Pennsylvania, Inc., Artesian Water Maryland, Inc., Artesian Wastewater Management, Inc. and Artesian Wastewater Maryland, Inc., and three non-regulated subsidiaries: Artesian Utility Development, Inc., Artesian Development Corporation and Artesian Consulting Engineers, Inc.

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