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Here's Why You Should Consider Investing in Crane (CR) Now

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Crane Co. (CR - Free Report) is well-poised for growth on the back of strength across its end markets, solid product portfolio, acquired assets and a sound capital-deployment strategy.

The Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) company has a market capitalization of $5.6 billion. In the past three months, it has gained 10.1% compared with the industry’s growth of 6.4%.

Zacks Investment Research
Image Source: Zacks Investment Research

Let’s delve into the factors that make investment in the company a smart choice at the moment.

Solid End Markets: Crane has been benefiting from improving order trends across several of its businesses, including short-cycle commercial and core processes. In the quarters ahead, the company anticipates strength across its businesses in chemical, general industrial, military, non-residential construction, municipal and most vertical end markets to drive the top-line performance. For 2021, it anticipates overall sales to be $3,100 million, compared with the previously guided $3,015 million.

Acquisition Benefits: The company intends to strengthen and expand its businesses through acquisitions. In the first six months of 2021, it acquired the business of Instrumentation & Sampling, which boosted the Process Flow Technologies segment’s sales by 1% on a year-over-year basis. For 2021, the company expects acquisitions to drive sales by $5 million.

Strong Cash Flows & Rewards to Shareholders: Crane’s ability to generate strong cash flows adds to its strength. In the first six months of 2021, the company generated strong free cash flow of $183.6 million. For 2021, its free cash flow is anticipated in the range of $320 million to $350 million. In the first half of 2021, its dividend payments were $50.2 million. In January 2020, it announced a 10% hike in its quarterly dividend rate.

Initiatives to Spur Growth: The company’s repositioning actions and focus on operational execution are likely to continue driving its performance in the quarters ahead. Its repositioning actions delivered a net restructuring gain of $13.3 million in the first six months of 2021.

Estimate Trend: In the past 60 days, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for its 2021 earnings has trended up from $5.76 to $6.13 on two upward estimate revisions against none downward. In the same time frame, the consensus mark for 2022 earnings has increased from $7.03 to $7.10 on three upward estimate revisions against none downward.

Other Key Picks

Some other top-ranked stocks from the same space are Raven Industries, Inc. (RAVN - Free Report) , Carlisle Companies Incorporated (CSL - Free Report) and Danaher Corporation (DHR - Free Report) . While Raven currently sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Carlisle and Danaher carry a Zacks Rank #2. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Raven has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 42.59%, on average.

Carlisle has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 39.38%, on average.

Danaher has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 27.52%, on average.

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