Intuitive Surgical (ISRG) and Pulse Biosciences (PLSE) Financial Comparison

Intuitive Surgical (NASDAQ: ISRG) and Pulse Biosciences (NASDAQ:PLSE) are both healthcare companies, but which is the superior investment? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their institutional ownership, risk, analyst recommendations, dividends, profitability, valuation and earnings.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and price targets for Intuitive Surgical and Pulse Biosciences, as provided by

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Intuitive Surgical 0 5 12 0 2.71
Pulse Biosciences 0 0 0 0 N/A

Intuitive Surgical currently has a consensus target price of $406.13, suggesting a potential downside of 2.37%. Given Intuitive Surgical’s higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Intuitive Surgical is more favorable than Pulse Biosciences.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Intuitive Surgical and Pulse Biosciences’ revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Intuitive Surgical $3.13 billion 14.93 $660.00 million $5.68 73.24
Pulse Biosciences N/A N/A -$9.51 million ($1.39) -13.54

Intuitive Surgical has higher revenue and earnings than Pulse Biosciences. Pulse Biosciences is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Intuitive Surgical, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

36.8% of Intuitive Surgical shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 9.3% of Pulse Biosciences shares are held by institutional investors. 2.2% of Intuitive Surgical shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 6.7% of Pulse Biosciences shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Volatility and Risk

Intuitive Surgical has a beta of 0.5, indicating that its stock price is 50% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Pulse Biosciences has a beta of -0.17, indicating that its stock price is 117% less volatile than the S&P 500.


This table compares Intuitive Surgical and Pulse Biosciences’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Intuitive Surgical 21.09% 19.93% 17.02%
Pulse Biosciences N/A -62.10% -57.47%


Intuitive Surgical beats Pulse Biosciences on 11 of the 12 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Intuitive Surgical

Intuitive Surgical, Inc. (Intuitive) designs, manufactures and markets da Vinci Surgical Systems, and related instruments and accessories. The Company’s da Vinci Surgical System consists of a surgeon’s console, a patient-side cart and a vision system. The da Vinci Surgical System translates a surgeon’s hand movements, which are performed on instrument controls at a console, into corresponding micro-movements of instruments positioned inside the patient through small incisions or ports. The da Vinci Surgical System provides its operating surgeons with control, range of motion, tissue manipulation capability and three-dimensional (3-D), high-definition (HD) vision. Intuitive has four generations of da Vinci Surgical System: the da Vinci Xi Surgical System, the da Vinci Si Surgical System, the da Vinci S Surgical System and the standard da Vinci Surgical System. The Company’s instruments and accessories include EndoWrist Instruments and da Vinci Single-Site.

About Pulse Biosciences

Pulse Biosciences, Inc., formerly Electroblate, Inc., is a development-stage medical device company using a platform technology called Nano-Pulse Electro-Signaling (NPES). NPES is a local and drug-free technology that utilizes nanosecond pulsed electric fields to induce cell signaling and the activation of cellular pathways in tissue. NPES provides treatment in a range of dermatology and aesthetic applications. It offers treatment for minimally invasive applications, such as cardiac ablation, lung disease, Barret’s esophagus, thyroid nodules, and ear, nose and throat (ENT) papillomas. The Company is developing a system for the delivery of NPES treatments, identified as the PulseTx system (PulseTx). The PulseTx system delivers NPES pulses through its tunable pulse generator and its planned suite of electrodes. The PulseTx system pulses are applied directly to tissue through electrodes, creating transient nanometer pores in cell and organelle membranes.

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