NL Industries (NL) and AZZ (AZZ) Head-To-Head Survey

NL Industries (NYSE: NL) and AZZ (NYSE:AZZ) are both small-cap basic materials companies, but which is the superior investment? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their risk, analyst recommendations, valuation, profitability, dividends, institutional ownership and earnings.


This table compares NL Industries and AZZ’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
NL Industries 67.61% 33.69% 17.82%
AZZ 6.27% 9.65% 5.13%

Insider & Institutional Ownership

9.4% of NL Industries shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 87.8% of AZZ shares are owned by institutional investors. 0.1% of NL Industries shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 0.0% of AZZ shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Volatility and Risk

NL Industries has a beta of 2.64, suggesting that its share price is 164% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, AZZ has a beta of 1.32, suggesting that its share price is 32% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent recommendations for NL Industries and AZZ, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
NL Industries 1 0 0 0 1.00
AZZ 0 1 0 0 2.00

NL Industries currently has a consensus price target of $14.00, indicating a potential upside of 12.00%. AZZ has a consensus price target of $52.00, indicating a potential upside of 15.56%. Given AZZ’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe AZZ is more favorable than NL Industries.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares NL Industries and AZZ’s gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
NL Industries $108.90 million 5.59 $15.32 million $1.58 7.91
AZZ $858.93 million 1.36 $60.92 million $1.97 22.84

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


AZZ pays an annual dividend of $0.68 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.5%. NL Industries does not pay a dividend. AZZ pays out 34.5% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. AZZ has increased its dividend for 4 consecutive years.


AZZ beats NL Industries on 9 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

About NL Industries

NL Industries, Inc. is a holding company. The Company operates in the component products industry through its subsidiary, CompX International Inc. (CompX). The Company operates in the chemicals industry through its non-controlling interest in Kronos Worldwide, Inc. (Kronos). The Company, through Compx, manufactures engineered components that are sold to a range of industries, including recreational transportation (including boats), postal, office and institutional furniture, cabinetry, tool storage, healthcare, gas stations and vending equipment. Kronos is a global producer and marketer of value-added titanium dioxide pigments (TiO2), a base industrial product used in imparting whiteness, brightness and opacity to a range of customer applications and end use markets, including coatings, plastics, paper, inks, food, cosmetics, and other industrial and consumer products. Kronos has production facilities in Europe and North America.

About AZZ

AZZ Inc. is a provider of galvanizing services, welding solutions, specialty electrical equipment and engineered services to the power generation, transmission, distribution, refining and industrial markets. The Company operates through two segments: Energy segment and Galvanizing segment. Its Energy segment provides products and services designed to support industrial, nuclear and electrical applications. Its product offerings include custom switchgear, electrical enclosures, medium and high voltage bus ducts, explosion proof and hazardous duty lighting, nuclear safety-related equipment and tubular products. Its Galvanizing segment provides hot dip galvanizing to the steel fabrication industry through facilities located throughout the United States and Canada. It serves fabricators or manufacturers that provide services to the electrical and telecommunications, bridge and highway, petrochemical and general industrial markets and various original equipment manufacturers.

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