It's tax time once again.
For a still-rising number of taxpayers, this means it's time to buy, download or purchase a copy of TurboTax or H&R Block at Home (formerly known as TaxCut), the leading tax-preparation offerings from Intuit (Nasdaq: INTU) and H&R Block (NYSE: HRB), respectively.
These software programs are remarkably similar to each other, and this year's programs look and feel a lot like the offerings from last year. Frankly, it's hard to make a case for one tax software package over the other as they are both quite good.
Yet there is a much more pitched battle when it comes to their stocks. Each company sports a distinct business model and each generates very different financial statements. Which stock is the better buy? Let's find out...
1. Intuit: boringly successful
This maker of Quicken accounting software, along with the top-selling TurboTax, is the equivalent of a Japanese sedan. It never surprises you and delivers the same user experience year after year. With the exception of fiscal (July) 2009, when the weak economy led to just 4% sales growth, revenue has otherwise risen either 11% or 12% in three of the past four years. The outlook for fiscal 2012 and 2013? More of the same.