Is Albemarle (ALB) outperforming other basic materials stocks this year?

For those looking to find strong basic materials stocks, it is prudent to look for group companies that outperform their peers. Albemarle (ALB) is a stock that can certainly catch the eye of many investors, but do its recent returns compare favorably to those of the sector as a whole? Looking at the stock’s year-to-date performance against its commodity peers, we might be able to answer that question.

Albemarle is one of 243 companies in the Basic Materials group. The basic materials group is currently ranked 4th in the Zacks industry rankings. The Zacks Sector Ranking assesses the strength of our 16 individual sector groups by measuring the average Zacks Ranking of individual stocks within the groups.

The Zacks Ranking is a proven model that highlights a variety of stocks with the right characteristics to outperform the market over the next one to three months. The system emphasizes revisions to earnings estimates and favors companies with improving earnings prospects. Albemarle currently sports a Zacks rank of #1 (Strong Buy).

Over the past three months, the Zacks consensus estimate for ALB’s annual earnings has risen 8.9%. This shows that analyst sentiment has improved and the company’s earnings outlook is stronger.

Our latest available data shows that the ALB has returned around 3.3% since the start of the calendar year. In comparison, basic materials companies achieved an average return of 2.9%. This means Albemarle is outperforming the overall sector this year.

Another basic materials stock that has outperformed the sector so far this year is Teck Resources Ltd (TECK). The stock is up 24.9% since the start of the year.

Over the past three months, Teck Resources Ltd’s current-year EPS consensus estimate has risen 31.4%. The stock currently has a Zacks rank of No. 1 (Strong Buy).

To break it down further, Albemarle belongs to the Chemical Industry – Diversified, a group that includes 40 individual companies and is currently ranked 90th in the Zacks Industry Rankings. On average, this group has lost an average of 1.7% so far this year, which means ALB is doing better in terms of returns year-to-date.

However, Teck Resources Ltd belongs to Mining – Miscellaneous. Currently, this 50-stock industry is ranked #87. The industry is up +9.7% so far this year.

Going forward, investors interested in basic materials stocks should continue to pay close attention to Albemarle and Teck Resources Ltd as they may maintain their strong performance.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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