ATA (ATAI) & Career Education (CECO) Head to Head Survey

ATA (NASDAQ:ATAI) and Career Education (NASDAQ:CECO) are both small-cap consumer discretionary companies, but which is the better investment? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their valuation, profitability, risk, analyst recommendations, institutional ownership, dividends and earnings.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and recommmendations for ATA and Career Education, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
ATA 0 0 0 0 N/A
Career Education 0 1 1 0 2.50

Career Education has a consensus target price of $20.75, indicating a potential upside of 16.84%. Given Career Education’s higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Career Education is more favorable than ATA.

Volatility and Risk

ATA has a beta of 1.54, indicating that its stock price is 54% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Career Education has a beta of 1.67, indicating that its stock price is 67% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Institutional and Insider Ownership

1.6% of ATA shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 81.0% of Career Education shares are owned by institutional investors. 52.9% of ATA shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 5.6% of Career Education shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares ATA and Career Education’s gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
ATA $190,000.00 340.21 $124.34 million N/A N/A
Career Education $581.30 million 2.13 $55.18 million $1.05 16.91

ATA has higher earnings, but lower revenue than Career Education.

Profitability

This table compares ATA and Career Education’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
ATA 52,906.01% -61.27% -49.74%
Career Education 9.49% 19.78% 14.15%

Summary

Career Education beats ATA on 7 of the 11 factors compared between the two stocks.

About ATA

ATA Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides computer-based testing services in the People's Republic of China. The company offers services for the creation and delivery of computer-based tests utilizing its test delivery platform and proprietary testing technologies that are used for professional licensure and certification tests in various industries, including IT services, banking, teaching, and insurance; and administrative services, such as test registration, scheduling, fee collection, and certification fulfillment. Its e-testing platform integrates various aspects of the test delivery process for computer-based tests, from test form compilation to test scoring and results analysis. The company also offers mobile test administration platform MTS for test administration; and EzTest, an online self-service testing platform that provides testing management and delivery functions for the test delivery organizations and individuals, including item banking, test form composition, test delivery, online proctoring, and test result analysis. In addition, it provides EzInterview, an online interview management platform to support the talent assessment and hiring process; and HR Select, an employee assessment solution that enables corporate human resources departments to test, benchmark, and analyze job applicants; and online education services. As of December 31, 2017, the company operated 3,344 authorized test centers. It serves professional associations, governmental agencies, and IT vendors, as well as individual online education services consumers. ATA Inc. was founded in 1999 and is headquartered in Beijing, the People's Republic of China.

About Career Education

Career Education Corporation operates colleges, institutions, and universities that provide education to student population in various career-oriented disciplines through online, campus based, and blended learning programs in the United States. The company operates through three segments: Colorado Technical University (CTU), American InterContinental University (AIU), and All Other Campuses. Its colleges and universities include AIU, CTU, Le Cordon Bleu institutions, Briarcliffe College, and Sanford-Brown College. The company offers doctoral, master's, bachelor's, and associate degrees, as well as diploma and certificate programs. It also provides academic programs in the career-oriented disciplines of business studies, nursing, computer science, engineering, information systems and technologies, cybersecurity, and healthcare management, as well as information technologies, and education and criminal justice; and educational programs in culinary arts, as well as patisserie and baking. As of December 31, 2017, the company had a total student enrollment of approximately 34,800 students. Career Education Corporation was founded in 1994 and is headquartered in Schaumburg, Illinois.

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