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

Insider and Institutional Ownership

90.2% of Mueller Industries shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 31.6% of Hutchinson Technology shares are owned by institutional investors. 2.8% of Mueller Industries shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 7.6% of Hutchinson Technology shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.


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

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

Analyst Ratings

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

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


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 increased its dividend for 5 consecutive years.

Volatility and Risk

Mueller Industries has a beta of 1.37, suggesting that its stock price is 37% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Hutchinson Technology has a beta of 0.66, suggesting that its stock price is 34% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Valuation and Earnings

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

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Mueller Industries $2.10 billion 0.85 $198.17 million N/A N/A
Hutchinson Technology N/A N/A N/A ($0.92) -4.33

Mueller Industries has higher revenue and earnings than Hutchinson Technology.


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

Mueller Industries Company Profile

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.

Hutchinson Technology Company Profile

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.

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