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UNVR vs. AIQUY: Which Stock Should Value Investors Buy Now?

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Investors looking for stocks in the Chemical - Diversified sector might want to consider either Univar (UNVR - Free Report) or Air Liquide (AIQUY - Free Report) . But which of these two stocks offers value investors a better bang for their buck right now? We'll need to take a closer look.

Everyone has their own methods for finding great value opportunities, but our model includes pairing an impressive grade in the Value category of our Style Scores system with a strong Zacks Rank. The Zacks Rank favors stocks with strong earnings estimate revision trends, and our Style Scores highlight companies with specific traits.

Univar has a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy), while Air Liquide has a Zacks Rank of #5 (Strong Sell) right now. This means that UNVR's earnings estimate revision activity has been more impressive, so investors should feel comfortable with its improving analyst outlook. But this is only part of the picture for value investors.

Value investors analyze a variety of traditional, tried-and-true metrics to help find companies that they believe are undervalued at their current share price levels.

Our Value category grades stocks based on a number of key metrics, including the tried-and-true P/E ratio, the P/S ratio, earnings yield, and cash flow per share, as well as a variety of other fundamentals that value investors frequently use.

UNVR currently has a forward P/E ratio of 10.54, while AIQUY has a forward P/E of 24.37. We also note that UNVR has a PEG ratio of 0.73. This figure is similar to the commonly-used P/E ratio, with the PEG ratio also factoring in a company's expected earnings growth rate. AIQUY currently has a PEG ratio of 2.04.

Another notable valuation metric for UNVR is its P/B ratio of 1.87. The P/B ratio is used to compare a stock's market value with its book value, which is defined as total assets minus total liabilities. For comparison, AIQUY has a P/B of 3.03.

These metrics, and several others, help UNVR earn a Value grade of A, while AIQUY has been given a Value grade of D.

UNVR is currently sporting an improving earnings outlook, which makes it stick out in our Zacks Rank model. And, based on the above valuation metrics, we feel that UNVR is likely the superior value option right now.


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