China Eastern Airlines (NASDAQ: HA) and Hawaiian (NASDAQ:HA) are both transportation companies, but which is the better stock? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their valuation, dividends, risk, institutional ownership, earnings, analyst recommendations and profitability.

Volatility and Risk

China Eastern Airlines has a beta of 1.62, suggesting that its stock price is 62% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Hawaiian has a beta of 1.3, suggesting that its stock price is 30% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares China Eastern Airlines and Hawaiian’s top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
China Eastern Airlines $15.17 billion 0.56 $938.61 million $3.26 9.03
Hawaiian $2.70 billion 0.73 $364.04 million $5.64 6.87

China Eastern Airlines has higher revenue and earnings than Hawaiian. Hawaiian is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than China Eastern Airlines, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

0.4% of China Eastern Airlines shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 84.8% of Hawaiian shares are held by institutional investors. 2.3% of Hawaiian shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, large money managers and endowments believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of recent ratings for China Eastern Airlines and Hawaiian, as provided by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
China Eastern Airlines 0 2 2 0 2.50
Hawaiian 2 6 3 0 2.09

Hawaiian has a consensus price target of $47.82, indicating a potential upside of 23.40%. Given Hawaiian’s higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Hawaiian is more favorable than China Eastern Airlines.

Profitability

This table compares China Eastern Airlines and Hawaiian’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
China Eastern Airlines 3.91% 7.21% 1.86%
Hawaiian 12.73% 32.45% 9.73%

Dividends

China Eastern Airlines pays an annual dividend of $0.36 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.2%. Hawaiian pays an annual dividend of $0.48 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.2%. China Eastern Airlines pays out 11.0% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Hawaiian pays out 8.5% 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. Hawaiian is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and lower payout ratio.

Summary

Hawaiian beats China Eastern Airlines on 11 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

About China Eastern Airlines

China Eastern Airlines Corporation Limited, together with its subsidiaries, operates in the civil aviation industry in the People's Republic of China and internationally. The company offers passenger, cargo, mail delivery, ground, cargo handling, tour operations, air catering, and other extended transportation services. It is also involved in flight training; airline maintenance and consultation; import and export, investment, leasing, and consultation; hotel services; travel and air ticketing agency and transportation; the research and development of technology and products in the field of aviation; and e-commerce platform activities. As of December 31, 2017, the company operated a fleet of 637 aircraft, including 627 passenger aircraft and 10 business aircraft. China Eastern Airlines Corporation Limited was founded in 1988 and is headquartered in Shanghai, the People's Republic of China. China Eastern Airlines Corporation Limited is a subsidiary of China Eastern Air Holding Company Limited.

About Hawaiian

Hawaiian Holdings, Inc., through its subsidiary, engages in the scheduled air transportation of passengers and cargo. The company offers daily services on North America routes between the State of Hawai'i and Los Angeles, Oakland, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco, and San Jose, California; Las Vegas, Nevada; Phoenix, Arizona; Portland, Oregon; and Seattle, Washington. It also provides daily service on Neighbor Island routes among the six islands of the State of Hawai'I; and international routes between the State of Hawai'i and Sydney, Australia, as well as Tokyo and Osaka, Japan. In addition, the company offers scheduled service between the State of Hawai'i and New York City, New York; Pago Pago, American Samoa; Papeete, Tahiti; Brisbane, Australia; Auckland, New Zealand; Sapporo, Japan; Seoul, South Korea; and Beijing, China, as well as various ad hoc charters. Hawaiian Holdings, Inc. distributes its tickets through various distribution channels, including its Website hawaiianairlines.com primarily for North America and Neighbor Island routes, as well as through travel agencies and wholesale distributors for its international routes. As of December 31, 2017, the company's fleet consisted of 20 Boeing 717-200 aircraft for the Neighbor Island routes; 8 Boeing 767-300 aircraft; 24 Airbus A330-200 aircraft; and 2 Airbus A321-200 for the North America, international, and charter routes, as well as owns 3 ATR42 aircraft. Hawaiian Holdings, Inc. was founded in 1929 and is headquartered in Honolulu, Hawaii.

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