Ladder Capital (LADR) and Independence Realty Trust (IRT) Critical Survey

Ladder Capital (NYSE: LADR) and Independence Realty Trust (NYSE:IRT) are both small-cap finance companies, but which is the superior stock? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their institutional ownership, valuation, earnings, analyst recommendations, profitability, risk and dividends.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current recommendations and price targets for Ladder Capital and Independence Realty Trust, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Ladder Capital 0 0 5 1 3.17
Independence Realty Trust 0 1 5 0 2.83

Ladder Capital presently has a consensus price target of $17.29, suggesting a potential upside of 3.32%. Independence Realty Trust has a consensus price target of $10.90, suggesting a potential upside of 8.57%. Given Independence Realty Trust’s higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Independence Realty Trust is more favorable than Ladder Capital.

Institutional and Insider Ownership

56.4% of Ladder Capital shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 81.3% of Independence Realty Trust shares are held by institutional investors. 12.8% of Ladder Capital shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 0.6% of Independence Realty Trust shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Risk and Volatility

Ladder Capital has a beta of 0.93, indicating that its stock price is 7% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Independence Realty Trust has a beta of 0.84, indicating that its stock price is 16% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Dividends

Ladder Capital pays an annual dividend of $1.30 per share and has a dividend yield of 7.8%. Independence Realty Trust pays an annual dividend of $0.72 per share and has a dividend yield of 7.2%. Ladder Capital pays out 95.6% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. Independence Realty Trust pays out 98.6% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. Ladder Capital is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and lower payout ratio.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Ladder Capital and Independence Realty Trust’s gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Ladder Capital $450.14 million 4.14 $95.27 million $1.36 12.30
Independence Realty Trust $160.50 million 5.48 $30.20 million $0.73 13.75

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

Profitability

This table compares Ladder Capital and Independence Realty Trust’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Ladder Capital 27.91% 12.43% 2.96%
Independence Realty Trust 8.19% 2.24% 0.95%

Summary

Ladder Capital beats Independence Realty Trust on 12 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Ladder Capital

Ladder Capital Corp operates as a real estate investment trust in the United States. The company operates through three segments: Loans, Securities, and Real Estate. The Loans segment originates conduit first mortgage loans that are secured by cash-flowing commercial real estate; and originates and invests in balance sheet first mortgage loans secured by commercial real estate properties that are undergoing transition, including lease-up, sell-out, and renovation or repositioning. It also invests in note purchase financings, subordinated debt, mezzanine debt, and other structured finance products related to commercial real estate. The Securities segment invests in commercial mortgage-backed securities and the U.S. Agency Securities. The Real Estate segment owns and invests in a portfolio of commercial and residential real estate properties, such as leased properties, office buildings, a warehouse, and condominium units. The company qualifies as a real estate investment trust for federal income tax purposes. It generally would not be subject to federal corporate income taxes if it distributes at least 90% of its taxable income to its stockholders. Ladder Capital Corp was founded in 2008 and is headquartered in New York, New York.

About Independence Realty Trust

Independence Realty Trust (NYSE: IRT) is a real estate investment trust that owns and operates 56 multifamily apartment properties, totaling 15,280 units, across non-gateway U.S. markets, including Atlanta, Louisville, Memphis, and Raleigh. IRT's investment strategy is focused on gaining scale within key amenity rich submarkets that offer good school districts, high-quality retail and major employment centers. IRT aims to provide stockholders attractive risk-adjusted returns through diligent portfolio management, strong operational performance, and a consistent return of capital through distributions and capital appreciation.

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