Ecolab (NYSE: ECL) and Cytec Industries (NYSE:CYT) are both mid-cap basic materials companies, but which is the superior stock? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, institutional ownership, earnings, risk, profitabiliy, valuation and dividends.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

76.1% of Ecolab shares are owned by institutional investors. 1.5% of Ecolab shares are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Dividends

Ecolab pays an annual dividend of $1.48 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.1%. Cytec Industries does not pay a dividend. Ecolab pays out 34.9% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Ecolab has increased its dividend for 3 consecutive years and Cytec Industries has increased its dividend for 31 consecutive years.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Ecolab and Cytec Industries’ revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Ecolab $13.22 billion 2.95 $2.88 billion $4.24 31.67
Cytec Industries N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A

Ecolab has higher revenue and earnings than Cytec Industries.

Profitability

This table compares Ecolab and Cytec Industries’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Ecolab 9.47% 18.96% 7.02%
Cytec Industries 11.96% 18.60% 8.55%

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of recent recommendations and price targets for Ecolab and Cytec Industries, as provided by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Ecolab 1 7 8 0 2.44
Cytec Industries 0 0 0 0 N/A

Ecolab presently has a consensus target price of $129.31, suggesting a potential downside of 3.70%. Given Ecolab’s higher possible upside, equities research analysts plainly believe Ecolab is more favorable than Cytec Industries.

Summary

Ecolab beats Cytec Industries on 7 of the 12 factors compared between the two stocks.

Ecolab Company Profile

Ecolab Inc. provides water, hygiene and energy technologies and services. The Company’s cleaning and sanitizing programs and products, pest elimination services and equipment maintenance and repair services support customers in the foodservice, food and beverage processing, hospitality, healthcare, government and education, retail, textile care and commercial facilities management sectors in over 170 countries. Its segments include Global Industrial, Global Institutional, Global Energy, Other and Corporate. Its Global Industrial segment consists of the Water, Food and Beverage, Paper and Textile Care operating units. Its Global Institutional segment consists of the Institutional, Specialty and Healthcare operating units. The Global Energy segment provides on-site and technology-driven solutions to the global drilling, oil and gas production, refining, and petrochemical industries. The Company’s Other segment consists of the Pest Elimination and Equipment Care operating units.

Cytec Industries Company Profile

Cytec Industries Inc. is a global specialty materials and chemicals company focused on developing, manufacturing and selling value-added products. The Company offers aerospace and industrial materials, mining and plastics industries. The Company operates through four segments: Aerospace Materials, Industrial Materials, In Process Separation, and Additive Technologies. The Aerospace Materials segment includes advanced composites, carbon fiber, and structural film adhesives. The Industrial Materials segment includes structural composite materials, which serve automotive, motorsports, recreation, tooling, and other structural materials markets and process materials, which serves aerospace, wind energy, and other process materials markets. The In Process Separation segment includes mining chemicals and phosphines. The Additive Technologies segment includes polymer additives, specialty additives, and formulated resins. The Company operates as a wholly owned subsidiary of Solvay.

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