Investors with an interest in Schools stocks have likely encountered both Grand Canyon Education (LOPE - Free Report) and Bright Horizons Family Solutions (BFAM - Free Report) . But which of these two stocks presents investors with the better value opportunity right now? Let's take a closer look.
We have found that the best way to discover great value opportunities is to pair a strong Zacks Rank with a great grade in the Value category of our Style Scores system. The Zacks Rank is a proven strategy that targets companies with positive earnings estimate revision trends, while our Style Scores work to grade companies based on specific traits.
Currently, Grand Canyon Education has a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy), while Bright Horizons Family Solutions has a Zacks Rank of #4 (Sell). The Zacks Rank favors stocks that have recently seen positive revisions to their earnings estimates, so investors should rest assured that LOPE has an improving earnings outlook. But this is just one piece of the puzzle for value investors.
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.
LOPE currently has a forward P/E ratio of 16.21, while BFAM has a forward P/E of 40.07. We also note that LOPE has a PEG ratio of 1.08. This figure is similar to the commonly-used P/E ratio, with the PEG ratio also factoring in a company's expected earnings growth rate. BFAM currently has a PEG ratio of 3.95.
Another notable valuation metric for LOPE is its P/B ratio of 3.08. The P/B is a method of comparing a stock's market value to its book value, which is defined as total assets minus total liabilities. By comparison, BFAM has a P/B of 9.46.
These are just a few of the metrics contributing to LOPE's Value grade of B and BFAM's Value grade of F.
LOPE is currently sporting an improving earnings outlook, which makes it stick out in our Zacks Rank model. And, based on the above valuation metrics, we feel that LOPE is likely the superior value option right now.