Hillenbrand (NYSE: HI) and Actuant Corporation (NYSE:ATU) are both consumer staples companies, but which is the superior business? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their profitability, analyst recommendations, dividends, risk, earnings, valuation and institutional ownership.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and target prices for Hillenbrand and Actuant Corporation, as provided by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Hillenbrand 0 1 1 0 2.50
Actuant Corporation 1 7 4 0 2.25

Actuant Corporation has a consensus target price of $25.88, suggesting a potential downside of 3.63%. Given Actuant Corporation’s higher probable upside, analysts clearly believe Actuant Corporation is more favorable than Hillenbrand.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Hillenbrand and Actuant Corporation’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Hillenbrand $1.58 billion 1.50 $278.20 million $1.94 19.41
Actuant Corporation $1.10 billion 1.46 $135.13 million $0.82 32.74

Hillenbrand has higher revenue and earnings than Actuant Corporation. Hillenbrand is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Actuant Corporation, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Risk & Volatility

Hillenbrand has a beta of 1.24, suggesting that its stock price is 24% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Actuant Corporation has a beta of 1.61, suggesting that its stock price is 61% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Dividends

Hillenbrand pays an annual dividend of $0.82 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.2%. Actuant Corporation pays an annual dividend of $0.04 per share and has a dividend yield of 0.1%. Hillenbrand pays out 42.3% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Actuant Corporation pays out 4.9% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Both companies have healthy payout ratios and should be able to cover their dividend payments with earnings for the next several years. Actuant Corporation has raised its dividend for 9 consecutive years.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

76.0% of Hillenbrand shares are owned by institutional investors. 1.7% of Hillenbrand shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 4.0% of Actuant Corporation shares are owned by 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 Hillenbrand and Actuant Corporation’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Hillenbrand 7.87% 19.72% 6.87%
Actuant Corporation 4.56% 10.58% 3.89%

Summary

Hillenbrand beats Actuant Corporation on 10 of the 17 factors compared between the two stocks.

Hillenbrand Company Profile

Hillenbrand, Inc. is a diversified industrial company with multiple brands that serve a range of industries across the globe. The Company operates in two segments: the Process Equipment Group and Batesville. The Process Equipment Group businesses design, develop, manufacture and service engineered industrial equipment throughout the world. The Process Equipment Group segment is a provider of compounding, extrusion and material handling; size reduction; screening and separating, and flow control products and services for a range of manufacturing and other industrial processes. It offers equipment for industries, including plastics, chemicals, fertilizers and mining. Its Batesville segment operates in the North American death care industry, and manufactures and sells funeral service products, including burial caskets, cremation caskets, containers and urns, selection room display fixtures, other personalization and memorialization products, and Web-based technology applications.

Actuant Corporation Company Profile

Actuant Corporation designs, manufactures and distributes a range of industrial products and systems to various end markets. The Company operates through three segments: Industrial, Energy and Engineered Solutions. The Company’s Industrial segment is primarily involved in the design, manufacture and distribution of branded hydraulic and mechanical tools to the maintenance, industrial, infrastructure and production automation markets. The Company’s Energy segment provides joint integrity products and services, customized offshore vessel mooring solutions, as well as rope and cable solutions to the global oil and gas, power generation and other energy markets. The Company’s Engineered Solutions segment provides engineered position and motion control systems to original equipment manufacturers (OEM) in various on and off-highway vehicle markets, as well as various other products to the industrial and agricultural markets.

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