Contrasting FMC (FMC) and Ashland Global (ASH)

FMC (NYSE: FMC) and Ashland Global (NYSE:ASH) are both basic materials companies, but which is the superior business? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their risk, dividends, profitability, analyst recommendations, valuation, institutional ownership and earnings.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares FMC and Ashland Global’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
FMC $2.88 billion 4.10 $535.80 million $2.71 32.38
Ashland Global $3.26 billion 1.64 $1.00 million $2.44 35.02

FMC has higher earnings, but lower revenue than Ashland Global. FMC is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Ashland Global, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

86.6% of FMC shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 94.4% of Ashland Global shares are owned by institutional investors. 1.2% of FMC shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 1.1% of Ashland Global 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.


FMC pays an annual dividend of $0.66 per share and has a dividend yield of 0.8%. Ashland Global pays an annual dividend of $1.00 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.2%. FMC pays out 24.4% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Ashland Global pays out 41.0% 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. FMC has raised its dividend for 7 consecutive years.

Risk and Volatility

FMC has a beta of 1.6, suggesting that its stock price is 60% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Ashland Global has a beta of 1.17, suggesting that its stock price is 17% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of current recommendations and price targets for FMC and Ashland Global, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
FMC 0 2 13 0 2.87
Ashland Global 0 2 9 0 2.82

FMC presently has a consensus target price of $102.07, indicating a potential upside of 16.31%. Ashland Global has a consensus target price of $87.33, indicating a potential upside of 2.20%. Given FMC’s stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, equities research analysts plainly believe FMC is more favorable than Ashland Global.


This table compares FMC and Ashland Global’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
FMC 23.96% 27.12% 8.40%
Ashland Global 1.28% 6.36% 2.57%


FMC beats Ashland Global on 13 of the 17 factors compared between the two stocks.

FMC Company Profile

FMC Corporation, a diversified chemical company, provides solutions, applications, and products for the agricultural, consumer, and industrial markets worldwide. The company operates in two segments, FMC Agricultural Solutions and FMC Lithium. The FMC Agricultural Solutions segment develops, manufactures, markets, and sells crop protection chemicals, including insecticides, herbicides, and fungicides that are used in agriculture to enhance crop yield and quality by controlling a range of insects, weeds, and diseases, as well as in non-agricultural markets for pest control. The FMC Lithium segment manufactures lithium for use in batteries, polymers, pharmaceuticals, greases and lubricants, glass and ceramics, and other industrial uses. FMC Corporation was founded in 1883 and is headquartered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Ashland Global Company Profile

Ashland Global Holdings Inc. provides specialty chemical solutions worldwide. Its Specialty Ingredients segment provides products, technologies, and resources for solving formulation and product-performance challenges. It offers solutions using natural, synthetic, and semisynthetic polymers derived from plant and seed extract, cellulose ethers, vinyl pyrrolidones, and acrylic polymers, as well as polyester and polyurethane-based adhesives. This segment offers its solutions for pharmaceutical companies; makers of personal care products, food, and beverages; manufacturers of paint, coatings, and construction materials; makers of nutraceuticals and supplements; packaging and converting markets; and oilfield service companies. The company's Composites segment manufactures and sells a range of unsaturated polyester and vinyl ester resins, gelcoats, and low-profile additives for the reinforced plastics industry; and molten maleic anhydride for the manufacture of various products, such as unsaturated polyester resins, copolymers, lubricating oil additives, alkenyl succinic anhydrides, malic acid, fumaric acid, and derivative chemicals. This segment serves manufacturers of residential and commercial building products; industrial product specifiers and manufacturers; wind blade and pipe manufacturers; automotive and truck OEM suppliers; boat builders; chemical producers; and electronics makers. Its Intermediates and Solvents segment produces 1,4 butanediol and related derivatives, including tetrahydrofuran and n-methylpyrrolidone that are used as chemical intermediates in the production of engineering polymers and polyurethanes, as well as specialty process solvents used in electronics, pharmaceuticals, water filtration membranes, and others. The company was formerly known as Ashland Inc. and changed its name to Ashland Global Holdings Inc. in September 2016. Ashland Global Holdings Inc. was founded in 1924 and is headquartered in Covington, Kentucky.

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