Key Technology (NASDAQ: KTEC) and Standex International Corporation (NYSE:SXI) are both small-cap industrial products companies, but which is the superior investment? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their earnings, risk, dividends, profitability, analyst recommendations, institutional ownership and valuation.

Profitability

This table compares Key Technology and Standex International Corporation’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Key Technology 2.58% 5.27% 3.31%
Standex International Corporation 6.01% 14.88% 7.66%

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of current recommendations and price targets for Key Technology and Standex International Corporation, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Key Technology 0 0 0 0 N/A
Standex International Corporation 0 1 2 0 2.67

Standex International Corporation has a consensus price target of $115.00, suggesting a potential upside of 25.14%. Given Standex International Corporation’s higher possible upside, analysts plainly believe Standex International Corporation is more favorable than Key Technology.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Key Technology and Standex International Corporation’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Key Technology $129.89 million 0.70 $10.16 million $0.52 27.12
Standex International Corporation $731.94 million 1.60 $95.03 million $3.44 26.72

Standex International Corporation has higher revenue and earnings than Key Technology. Standex International Corporation is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Key Technology, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

44.9% of Key Technology shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 89.3% of Standex International Corporation shares are held by institutional investors. 29.4% of Key Technology shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 2.1% of Standex International Corporation shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Volatility & Risk

Key Technology has a beta of 1.06, meaning that its share price is 6% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Standex International Corporation has a beta of 1.54, meaning that its share price is 54% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Dividends

Standex International Corporation pays an annual dividend of $0.64 per share and has a dividend yield of 0.7%. Key Technology does not pay a dividend. Standex International Corporation pays out 18.6% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Standex International Corporation has raised its dividend for 7 consecutive years.

Summary

Standex International Corporation beats Key Technology on 13 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

Key Technology Company Profile

Key Technology, Inc. is a supplier of process automation solutions to the food processing industry and other industries, such as tobacco and pharmaceuticals. The Company designs, manufactures, sells and services automation equipment that processes product streams of discrete pieces. These systems integrate electro-optical automated inspection and digital sorting systems with other processing systems that include specialized conveying and preparation equipment. The Company provides parts and service for each of its product lines to customers around the world. Its automated inspection systems are used in various applications to detect and remove defects and foreign material from the product stream. It offers conveying and processing equipment, which are utilized throughout various industries to move and process product within a production plant. Its Integrated Solutions Group (ISG) provides integrated whole-line solutions. It has an installed base of inspection and processing systems.

Standex International Corporation Company Profile

Standex International Corporation is a diversified manufacturing company. The Company is a manufacturer of a range of products and services for diverse commercial and industrial market segments. The Company has 11 operating segments, aggregated and organized into five segments: Food Service Equipment, Engraving, Engineering Technologies, Electronics and Hydraulics. The Food Service Equipment business consists of Refrigeration Solutions group, Cooking Solutions group and Specialty Solutions group. The Engraving segment’s product lines include Mold-Tech and Innovent. The Engineering Technologies segment provides engineered parts in all workable metal alloys using various forming processes. The Electronics segment is a manufacturer of custom magnetic sensing and power conversion components and assemblies. The Hydraulics segment is a manufacturer of mobile hydraulic cylinders, including single or double acting telescopic, and piston rod hydraulic cylinders.

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