A Comparison of Top Movers: CVS Health Corporation (CVS), Synergy Pharmaceuticals Inc. (SGYP)

The shares of CVS Health Corporation have decreased by more than -12.51% this year alone. The shares recently went down by -0.89% or -$0.57 and now trades at $63.43. The shares of Synergy Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ:SGYP), has slumped by -18.83% year to date as of 04/13/2018. The shares currently trade at $1.81 and have been able to report a change of -4.23% over the past one week.

The stock of CVS Health Corporation and Synergy Pharmaceuticals Inc. were two of the most active stocks on Friday. Investors seem to be very interested in what happens to the stocks of these two companies but do investors favor one over the other? We will analyze the growth, profitability, risk, valuation, and insider trends of both companies and see which one investors prefer.

Profitability and Returns

Growth alone cannot be used to see if the company will be valuable. Shareholders will be the losers if a company invest in ventures that aren’t profitable enough to support upbeat growth. In order for us to accurately measure profitability and return, we will be using the EBITDA margin and Return on Investment (ROI), which balances the difference in capital structure. CVS has an EBITDA margin of 6.38%, this implies that the underlying business of CVS is more profitable. The ROI of CVS is 12.20% while that of SGYP is -201.10%. These figures suggest that CVS ventures generate a higher ROI than that of SGYP.

Cash Flow

The value of a stock is ultimately determined by the amount of cash flow that the investors have available. Over the last 12 months, CVS’s free cash flow per share is a negative -0.62, while that of SGYP is also a negative -0.21.

Liquidity and Financial Risk

The ability of a company to meet up with its short-term obligations and be able to clear its longer-term debts is measured using Liquidity and leverage ratios. The current ratio for CVS is 1.00 and that of SGYP is 4.30. This implies that it is easier for CVS to cover its immediate obligations over the next 12 months than SGYP.


CVS currently trades at a forward P/E of 9.48, a P/B of 1.71, and a P/S of 0.35 while SGYP trades at a P/S of 27.16. This means that looking at the earnings, book values and sales basis, CVS is the cheaper one. It is very obvious that earnings are the most important factors to investors, thus analysts are most likely to place their bet on the P/E.

Analyst Price Targets and Opinions

The mistake some people make is that they think a cheap stock has more value to it. In order to know the value of a stock, there is need to compare its current price to its likely trading price in the future. The price of CVS is currently at a -28.38% to its one-year price target of 88.57. Looking at its rival pricing, SGYP is at a -74.44% relative to its price target of 7.08.

When looking at the investment recommendation on say a scale of 1 to 5 (1 being a strong buy, 3 a hold, and 5 a sell), CVS is given a 2.00 while 2.30 placed for SGYP. This means that analysts are more bullish on the outlook for SGYP stocks.

Insider Activity and Investor Sentiment

Short interest or otherwise called the percentage of a stock’s tradable shares currently being shorted is another data that investors use to get a handle on sentiment. The short ratio for CVS is 4.94 while that of SGYP is just 11.20. This means that analysts are more bullish on the forecast for CVS stock.


The stock of CVS Health Corporation defeats that of Synergy Pharmaceuticals Inc. when the two are compared, with CVS taking 7 out of the total factors that were been considered. CVS happens to be more profitable, generates a higher ROI, has higher cash flow per share, higher liquidity and has a lower financial risk. When looking at the stock valuation, CVS is the cheaper one on an earnings, book value and sales basis. Finally, the sentiment signal for CVS is better on when it is viewed on short interest.

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