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APLE vs. OFC: Which Stock Should Value Investors Buy Now?

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Investors interested in stocks from the REIT and Equity Trust - Other sector have probably already heard of Apple Hospitality REIT (APLE - Free Report) and Corporate Office Properties . But which of these two stocks offers value investors a better bang for their buck right now? We'll need to take a closer look.

There are plenty of strategies for discovering value stocks, but we have found that pairing a strong Zacks Rank with an impressive grade in the Value category of our Style Scores system produces the best returns. The Zacks Rank favors stocks with strong earnings estimate revision trends, and our Style Scores highlight companies with specific traits.

Currently, Apple Hospitality REIT has a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy), while Corporate Office Properties has a Zacks Rank of #3 (Hold). This system places an emphasis on companies that have seen positive earnings estimate revisions, so investors should feel comfortable knowing that APLE is likely seeing its earnings outlook improve to a greater extent. But this is just one factor that value investors are interested in.

Value investors also try to analyze a wide range of traditional figures and metrics to help determine whether a company is undervalued at its current share price levels.

The Value category of the Style Scores system identifies undervalued companies by looking at a number of key metrics. These include the long-favored P/E ratio, P/S ratio, earnings yield, cash flow per share, and a variety of other fundamentals that help us determine a company's fair value.

APLE currently has a forward P/E ratio of 10.81, while OFC has a forward P/E of 11.76. We also note that APLE has a PEG ratio of 0.44. This metric is used similarly to the famous P/E ratio, but the PEG ratio also takes into account the stock's expected earnings growth rate. OFC currently has a PEG ratio of 2.24.

Another notable valuation metric for APLE is its P/B ratio of 1.19. The P/B ratio pits a stock's market value against its book value, which is defined as total assets minus total liabilities. For comparison, OFC has a P/B of 1.82.

These are just a few of the metrics contributing to APLE's Value grade of B and OFC's Value grade of C.

APLE has seen stronger estimate revision activity and sports more attractive valuation metrics than OFC, so it seems like value investors will conclude that APLE is the superior option right now.

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