CF Industries Holdings (NYSE: CF) and Mosaic Company (The) (NYSE:MOS) are both mid-cap basic materials companies, but which is the better business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their valuation, institutional ownership, earnings, profitabiliy, risk, analyst recommendations and dividends.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares CF Industries Holdings and Mosaic Company (The)’s gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
CF Industries Holdings $3.71 billion 2.01 $978.00 million ($1.59) -20.08
Mosaic Company (The) $7.15 billion 1.08 $1.07 billion $0.42 52.31

Mosaic Company (The) has higher revenue and earnings than CF Industries Holdings. CF Industries Holdings is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Mosaic Company (The), indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Dividends

CF Industries Holdings pays an annual dividend of $1.20 per share and has a dividend yield of 3.8%. Mosaic Company (The) pays an annual dividend of $0.60 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.7%. CF Industries Holdings pays out -75.5% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Mosaic Company (The) pays out 142.9% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. CF Industries Holdings has increased its dividend for 2 consecutive years and Mosaic Company (The) has increased its dividend for 4 consecutive years. CF Industries Holdings is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and lower payout ratio.

Profitability

This table compares CF Industries Holdings and Mosaic Company (The)’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
CF Industries Holdings -9.98% -0.40% -0.17%
Mosaic Company (The) 2.07% 3.31% 1.88%

Institutional & Insider Ownership

82.4% of Mosaic Company (The) shares are owned by institutional investors. 1.0% of CF Industries Holdings shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 0.4% of Mosaic Company (The) 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.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent recommendations and price targets for CF Industries Holdings and Mosaic Company (The), as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
CF Industries Holdings 2 5 4 0 2.18
Mosaic Company (The) 5 8 1 0 1.71

CF Industries Holdings presently has a consensus target price of $31.33, indicating a potential downside of 1.87%. Mosaic Company (The) has a consensus target price of $24.33, indicating a potential upside of 10.76%. Given Mosaic Company (The)’s higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Mosaic Company (The) is more favorable than CF Industries Holdings.

Volatility and Risk

CF Industries Holdings has a beta of 1.17, suggesting that its stock price is 17% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Mosaic Company (The) has a beta of 1.24, suggesting that its stock price is 24% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Summary

Mosaic Company (The) beats CF Industries Holdings on 10 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

CF Industries Holdings Company Profile

CF Industries Holdings, Inc. manufactures and distributes nitrogen fertilizer, and other nitrogen products. The Company’s nitrogen fertilizer products are ammonia, granular urea, urea ammonium nitrate solution (UAN) and ammonium nitrate (AN). Its other nitrogen products include diesel exhaust fluid (DEF), urea liquor, nitric acid and aqua ammonia, which are sold primarily to the Company’s industrial customers, and compound fertilizer products (nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium or NPKs). The Company’s segments include ammonia, granular urea, UAN, AN and other. The Company’s ammonia segment produces anhydrous ammonia (ammonia), which is concentrated nitrogen fertilizer as it contains 82% nitrogen. The granular urea segment produces granular urea, which contains 46% nitrogen. The UAN segment produces urea ammonium nitrate solution. The Other segment includes DEF, urea liquor, nitric acid and NPKs. The Company’s primary nitrogen fertilizer products are ammonia, granular urea, UAN and AN.

Mosaic Company (The) Company Profile

The Mosaic Company is a producer and marketer of concentrated phosphate and potash crop nutrients. The Company operates through three segments: Phosphates, Potash and International Distribution. The Company is a supplier of phosphate- and potash-based crop nutrients and animal feed ingredients. The Phosphates segment owns and operates mines and production facilities in Florida, which produce concentrated phosphate crop nutrients and phosphate-based animal feed ingredients, and processing plants in Louisiana, which produce concentrated phosphate crop nutrients. The Potash segment mines and processes potash in Canada and the United States, and sells potash in North America and internationally. The International Distribution segment markets phosphate-, potash- and nitrogen-based crop nutrients and animal feed ingredients, and provides other ancillary services to wholesalers, cooperatives, independent retailers and farmers in South America and the Asia-Pacific regions.

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