2 Top Movers Choose Wisely: United Community Banks, Inc. (UCBI), Synaptics Incorporated (SYNA)

The shares of United Community Banks, Inc. have increased by more than 28.01% this year alone. The shares recently went down by -2.97% or -$0.84 and now trades at $27.47. The shares of Synaptics Incorporated (NASDAQ:SYNA), has jumped by 7.36% year to date as of 10/08/2019. The shares currently trade at $39.95 and have been able to report a change of 1.91% over the past one week.

The stock of United Community Banks, Inc. and Synaptics Incorporated were two of the most active stocks on Tuesday. Investors seem to be very interested in what happens to the stocks of these two companies but do investors favor one over the other? We will analyze the growth, profitability, risk, valuation, and insider trends of both companies and see which one investors prefer.

Next 5Y EPS Growth: 1.00% versus 12.50%

When a company is able to grow consistently in terms of earnings at a high compound rate have the highest likelihood of creating value for its shareholders over time. Analysts have predicted that UCBI will grow it’s earning at a 1.00% annual rate in the next 5 years. This is in contrast to SYNA which will have a positive growth at a 12.50% annual rate. This means that the higher growth rate of SYNA implies a greater potential for capital appreciation over the years.

Profitability and Returns

Growth alone cannot be used to see if the company will be valuable. Shareholders will be the losers if a company invest in ventures that aren’t profitable enough to support upbeat growth. In order for us to accurately measure profitability and return, we will be using the EBITDA margin and Return on Investment (ROI), which balances the difference in capital structure. UCBI has an EBITDA margin of 58.58%, this implies that the underlying business of UCBI is more profitable. The ROI of UCBI is 22.00% while that of SYNA is -0.30%. These figures suggest that UCBI ventures generate a higher ROI than that of SYNA.

Cash Flow

The value of a stock is ultimately determined by the amount of cash flow that the investors have available. Over the last 12 months, UCBI’s free cash flow per share is a positive 0, while that of SYNA is positive 2.44.

Liquidity and Financial Risk

The ability of a company to meet up with its short-term obligations and be able to clear its longer-term debts is measured using Liquidity and leverage ratios. The debt ratio of UCBI is 0.16 compared to 0.71 for SYNA. SYNA can be able to settle its long-term debts and thus is a lower financial risk than UCBI.

Valuation

UCBI currently trades at a forward P/E of 12.10, a P/B of 1.40, and a P/S of 4.07 while SYNA trades at a forward P/E of 12.12, a P/B of 2.09, and a P/S of 0.93. This means that looking at the earnings, book values and sales basis, UCBI is the cheaper one. It is very obvious that earnings are the most important factors to investors, thus analysts are most likely to place their bet on the P/E.

Analyst Price Targets and Opinions

The mistake some people make is that they think a cheap stock has more value to it. In order to know the value of a stock, there is need to compare its current price to its likely trading price in the future. The price of UCBI is currently at a -9.31% to its one-year price target of 30.29. Looking at its rival pricing, SYNA is at a 7.33% relative to its price target of 37.22.

When looking at the investment recommendation on say a scale of 1 to 5 (1 being a strong buy, 3 a hold, and 5 a sell), UCBI is given a 2.50 while 2.80 placed for SYNA. This means that analysts are more bullish on the outlook for SYNA stocks.

Insider Activity and Investor Sentiment

Short interest or otherwise called the percentage of a stock’s tradable shares currently being shorted is another data that investors use to get a handle on sentiment. The short ratio for UCBI is 6.67 while that of SYNA is just 11.58. This means that analysts are more bullish on the forecast for UCBI stock.

Conclusion

The stock of Synaptics Incorporated defeats that of United Community Banks, Inc. when the two are compared, with SYNA taking 6 out of the total factors that were been considered. SYNA happens to be more profitable, generates a higher ROI, has higher cash flow per share, higher liquidity and has a lower financial risk. When looking at the stock valuation, SYNA is the cheaper one on an earnings, book value and sales basis. Finally, the sentiment signal for SYNA is better on when it is viewed on short interest.