Clean Energy Fuels (NASDAQ: CLNE) and Vectren (NYSE:VVC) are both utilities companies, but which is the superior business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their risk, analyst recommendations, valuation, profitability, dividends, earnings and institutional ownership.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

33.5% of Clean Energy Fuels shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 64.1% of Vectren shares are held by institutional investors. 26.7% of Clean Energy Fuels shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 0.1% of Vectren shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, hedge funds and endowments believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Volatility and Risk

Clean Energy Fuels has a beta of 1.39, meaning that its stock price is 39% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Vectren has a beta of 0.59, meaning that its stock price is 41% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of recent recommendations and price targets for Clean Energy Fuels and Vectren, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Clean Energy Fuels 0 0 0 0 N/A
Vectren 0 3 1 0 2.25

Vectren has a consensus target price of $64.67, suggesting a potential downside of 1.35%. Given Vectren’s higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Vectren is more favorable than Clean Energy Fuels.

Dividends

Vectren pays an annual dividend of $1.80 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.7%. Clean Energy Fuels does not pay a dividend. Vectren pays out 69.2% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Vectren has increased its dividend for 58 consecutive years.

Profitability

This table compares Clean Energy Fuels and Vectren’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Clean Energy Fuels -23.20% -15.55% -9.41%
Vectren 8.13% 11.91% 3.62%

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Clean Energy Fuels and Vectren’s gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Clean Energy Fuels $341.60 million 0.71 -$79.23 million ($0.53) -3.00
Vectren $2.66 billion 2.05 $216.00 million $2.60 25.21

Vectren has higher revenue and earnings than Clean Energy Fuels. Clean Energy Fuels is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Vectren, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Summary

Vectren beats Clean Energy Fuels on 13 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

Clean Energy Fuels Company Profile

Clean Energy Fuels Corp. provides natural gas as an alternative fuel for vehicle fleets in the United States and Canada. The company supplies renewable natural gas (RNG), compressed natural gas (CNG), and liquefied natural gas (LNG) for light, medium, and heavy-duty vehicles; and provides operation and maintenance services for vehicle fleet customer stations. It also designs, builds, operates, and maintains fueling stations; and sells and services natural gas fueling compressors and other equipment used in CNG and LNG stations. In addition, the company provides assessment, design, and modification solutions to operators with code-compliant service and maintenance facilities for natural gas vehicle fleets; transports and sells CNG and LNG through virtual natural gas pipelines and interconnects; and procures and sells RNG. Further, it sells tradable credits comprising RNG and conventional natural gas as a vehicle fuel, such as Renewable Identification Numbers and Low Carbon Fuel Standards credits; and helps customers in acquiring and financing natural gas vehicles, as well as obtaining federal, state, and local credits, grants, and incentives. The company serves heavy-duty trucking, airport, refuse, and public transit markets; and industrial and institutional energy users, as well as government fleets. As of December 31, 2017 it served approximately 1,000 fleet customers operating approximately 46,000 natural gas vehicles; and owned, operated, or supplied approximately 530 natural gas fueling stations in 42 states in the United States and in 4 provinces in Canada. Clean Energy Fuels Corp. was incorporated in 2001 and is headquartered in Newport Beach, California.

Vectren Company Profile

Vectren Corporation provides energy delivery services to residential, commercial, and industrial and other contract customers. The company offers natural gas distribution and transportation services, and electric transmission and distribution services; and owns and operates coal-fired, natural gas or oil-fired, and landfill gas electric generating facilities with an installed generating capacity of 1,248 megawatts. Its electric transmission system consists of approximately 1,028 circuit miles of 345, 138, and 69 kilovolt lines, and 34 substations; and distribution system comprises 4,543 circuit miles of lower voltage overhead lines and 462 trench miles of conduit containing 2,405 circuit miles of underground distribution cable, as well as 85 distribution substations and 54,919 distribution transformers. The company also provides underground pipeline construction and repair services; and energy performance contracting and sustainable infrastructure, such as renewables, distributed generation, and combined heat and power projects, as well as invests in energy-related opportunities and services. It serves various industries comprising automotive assembly, parts, and accessories; feed, flour, and grain processing; metal castings and plastic products; gypsum products; electrical equipment, metal specialties, and glass and steel finishing; pharmaceutical and nutritional products; gasoline and oil products; ethanol; and coal mining. The company supplies natural gas services to approximately 1,022,000 customers in Indiana and Ohio; and electric services to approximately 145,200 customers in Indiana. Vectren Corporation was incorporated in 1999 and is headquartered in Evansville, Indiana.

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