Analyzing Actuant (ATU) and Curtiss-Wright (CW)

Actuant (NYSE: ATU) and Curtiss-Wright (NYSE:CW) are both industrial products companies, but which is the better investment? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, institutional ownership, earnings, dividends, profitability, risk and valuation.


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Actuant pays an annual dividend of $0.04 per share and has a dividend yield of 0.2%. Curtiss-Wright pays an annual dividend of $0.60 per share and has a dividend yield of 0.4%. Actuant pays out 4.8% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Curtiss-Wright pays out 11.9% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Both companies have healthy payout ratios and should be able to cover their dividend payments with earnings for the next several years. Curtiss-Wright has increased its dividend for 6 consecutive years. Curtiss-Wright is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and longer track record of dividend growth.

Risk & Volatility

Actuant has a beta of 1.51, meaning that its stock price is 51% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Curtiss-Wright has a beta of 1.18, meaning that its stock price is 18% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of current ratings and target prices for Actuant and Curtiss-Wright, as reported by

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Actuant 1 6 3 0 2.20
Curtiss-Wright 0 2 6 0 2.75

Actuant currently has a consensus price target of $23.63, indicating a potential upside of 1.74%. Curtiss-Wright has a consensus price target of $135.29, indicating a potential downside of 1.09%. Given Actuant’s higher possible upside, equities research analysts plainly believe Actuant is more favorable than Curtiss-Wright.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Actuant and Curtiss-Wright’s gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Actuant $1.10 billion 1.27 -$66.21 million $0.83 27.98
Curtiss-Wright $2.27 billion 2.66 $214.89 million $5.03 27.19

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

Insider & Institutional Ownership

78.7% of Curtiss-Wright shares are held by institutional investors. 1.1% of Actuant shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 0.9% of Curtiss-Wright shares are held 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.


This table compares Actuant and Curtiss-Wright’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Actuant -7.86% 9.21% 3.36%
Curtiss-Wright 9.46% 15.46% 7.02%


Curtiss-Wright beats Actuant on 12 of the 17 factors compared between the two stocks.

Actuant Company Profile

Actuant Corporation designs, manufactures and distributes a range of industrial products and systems to various end markets. The Company operates through three segments: Industrial, Energy and Engineered Solutions. The Company’s Industrial segment is primarily involved in the design, manufacture and distribution of branded hydraulic and mechanical tools to the maintenance, industrial, infrastructure and production automation markets. The Company’s Energy segment provides joint integrity products and services, customized offshore vessel mooring solutions, as well as rope and cable solutions to the global oil and gas, power generation and other energy markets. The Company’s Engineered Solutions segment provides engineered position and motion control systems to original equipment manufacturers (OEM) in various on and off-highway vehicle markets, as well as various other products to the industrial and agricultural markets.

Curtiss-Wright Company Profile

Curtiss-Wright Corporation is a manufacturing and service company that designs, manufactures, and overhauls precision components and provides engineered products and services to the aerospace, defense, power generation and general industrial markets. The Company operates through three segments: Commercial/Industrial, Defense and Power. The Commercial/Industrial segment’s products include electronic throttle control devices and transmission shifters, electro-mechanical actuation control components, valves, and surface technology services. The Defense segment’s products include commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) embedded computing board level modules, turret aiming and stabilization products, weapons handling systems, avionics and electronics, flight test equipment, and aircraft data management solutions. The Power segment’s products include a range of hardware, pumps, valves, fastening systems, specialized containment doors, airlock hatches and spent fuel management products.

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