Hutchinson Technology (NASDAQ: HTCH) and Mueller Industries (NYSE:MLI) are both industrials companies, but which is the superior stock? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their dividends, institutional ownership, earnings, valuation, profitabiliy, analyst recommendations and risk.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

31.6% of Hutchinson Technology shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 90.4% of Mueller Industries shares are held by institutional investors. 7.6% of Hutchinson Technology shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 2.8% of Mueller Industries shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, hedge funds and endowments believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.


This table compares Hutchinson Technology and Mueller Industries’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Hutchinson Technology -12.87% -50.69% -12.38%
Mueller Industries 4.81% 12.31% 7.25%


Mueller Industries pays an annual dividend of $0.40 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.3%. Hutchinson Technology does not pay a dividend. Mueller Industries has raised its dividend for 5 consecutive years.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Hutchinson Technology and Mueller Industries’ top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Hutchinson Technology N/A N/A N/A ($0.92) -4.33
Mueller Industries $2.10 billion 0.82 $198.17 million N/A N/A

Mueller Industries has higher revenue and earnings than Hutchinson Technology.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current ratings and target prices for Hutchinson Technology and Mueller Industries, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Hutchinson Technology 0 0 0 0 N/A
Mueller Industries 0 0 0 0 N/A

Risk and Volatility

Hutchinson Technology has a beta of 0.66, indicating that its stock price is 34% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Mueller Industries has a beta of 1.36, indicating that its stock price is 36% more volatile than the S&P 500.


Mueller Industries beats Hutchinson Technology on 8 of the 9 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Hutchinson Technology

Hutchinson Technology Incorporated is a global supplier of critical precision component technologies. The Company is engaged in manufacturing suspension assemblies for all sizes and types of hard disk drives. Suspension assemblies are components of disk drives that hold the read/write heads in position above the spinning magnetic disks. It manufactures its suspension assemblies with technology and processes with low part-to-part variation. The Company categorizes its products as either suspension assemblies or other revenue, which consists primarily of revenue outside of the disk drive industry for precision component manufacturing, tool design, tool build and metrology, suspension assembly components, reimbursement for disk drive industry-related engineering services and specific disk drive program capacity, and biomeasurement products. It sells its suspension assemblies to original equipment manufacturers.

About Mueller Industries

Mueller Industries, Inc. is a manufacturer of copper, brass, aluminum and plastic products. The Company operates through three segments: Piping Systems, Industrial Metals and Climate. The Company’s products include copper tube and fittings; line sets; brass and copper alloy rod, bar, and shapes; aluminum and brass forgings; aluminum impact extrusions; plastic fittings and valves; refrigeration valves and fittings; fabricated tubular products, and steel nipples. The Company also resells imported brass and plastic plumbing valves, malleable iron fittings, faucets, and plumbing specialty products. The Company’s operations are located throughout the United States and in Canada, Mexico, Great Britain, South Korea, and China. The Company markets its products to the heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC), plumbing, refrigeration, hardware, and other industries.

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