Contrasting RAIT Financial Trust (RAS) & American Assets Trust (AAT)

RAIT Financial Trust (NYSE: RAS) and American Assets Trust (NYSE:AAT) are both small-cap finance companies, but which is the better stock? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, earnings, dividends, valuation, risk, profitability and institutional ownership.

Risk and Volatility

RAIT Financial Trust has a beta of 1.66, meaning that its stock price is 66% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, American Assets Trust has a beta of 0.52, meaning that its stock price is 48% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Dividends

RAIT Financial Trust pays an annual dividend of $0.20 per share and has a dividend yield of 50.0%. American Assets Trust pays an annual dividend of $1.04 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.6%. RAIT Financial Trust pays out -11.1% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. American Assets Trust pays out 157.6% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. RAIT Financial Trust is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and lower payout ratio.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of recent ratings and target prices for RAIT Financial Trust and American Assets Trust, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
RAIT Financial Trust 1 3 0 0 1.75
American Assets Trust 0 2 1 0 2.33

RAIT Financial Trust currently has a consensus target price of $1.43, suggesting a potential upside of 256.25%. American Assets Trust has a consensus target price of $43.67, suggesting a potential upside of 11.03%. Given RAIT Financial Trust’s higher possible upside, equities research analysts plainly believe RAIT Financial Trust is more favorable than American Assets Trust.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

58.5% of RAIT Financial Trust shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 98.0% of American Assets Trust shares are owned by institutional investors. 1.3% of RAIT Financial Trust shares are owned by company insiders. Comparatively, 34.2% of American Assets Trust shares are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Profitability

This table compares RAIT Financial Trust and American Assets Trust’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
RAIT Financial Trust -137.66% -0.59% -0.08%
American Assets Trust 10.90% 3.97% 1.58%

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares RAIT Financial Trust and American Assets Trust’s revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio NetIncome Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
RAIT Financial Trust $173.61 million 0.21 $25.34 million ($1.80) -0.22
American Assets Trust $295.09 million 6.28 $45.63 million $0.66 59.59

American Assets Trust has higher revenue and earnings than RAIT Financial Trust. RAIT Financial Trust is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than American Assets Trust, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Summary

American Assets Trust beats RAIT Financial Trust on 11 of the 15 factors compared between the two stocks.

About RAIT Financial Trust

RAIT Financial Trust (RAIT) is a real estate investment trust (REIT). The Company focuses on providing commercial real estate (CRE) financing throughout the United States. The core of its business is a full service CRE lending platform focused on first lien loans. It offers customized lending solutions to meet borrower needs and internal credit goals. It offers personalized middle-market financing solutions and a complement of lending products for CRE. The Company may also offer mezzanine loans and preferred equity interests in limited circumstances to support first lien loans. It is engaged in floating rate securitization programs and has access to multiple sources of funding, including senior debt, convertible securities, preferred securities and common securities. The Company also owns and manages a portfolio of CRE properties, and manages real estate assets for third parties. The Company is engaged in lending, owning and managing CRE assets throughout the United States.

About American Assets Trust

American Assets Trust, Inc. is a full service, vertically integrated and self-administered real estate investment trust (REIT). The Company owns, operates, acquires and develops retail, office, multifamily and mixed-use properties in Southern California, Northern California, Oregon, Washington, Texas and Hawaii markets. The Company operates in four business segments: retail, office, multifamily and mixed-use. As of December 31, 2016, the Company’s portfolio consisted of 11 retail shopping centers; seven office properties; a mixed-use property consisting of a 369-room all-suite hotel and a retail shopping center, and five multifamily properties. Additionally, as of December 31, 2016, the Company owned land at four of its properties that it classified as held for development and construction in progress. The Company’s markets include San Diego, the San Francisco Bay Area, Portland, Oregon, Bellevue, Washington and Oahu, Hawaii.

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