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W.W. Grainger vs. Fastenal: Which Industrial Stock is a Better Buy?

Stock Markets Nov 02, 2021 05:31PM ET
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© Reuters. W.W. Grainger vs. Fastenal: Which Industrial Stock is a Better Buy?

Despite investor concerns about the resilience of the economic recovery in the face of the continuing spread of the COVID-19 Delta variant and high inflation, the industrial sector has been attracting much attention, due primarily to President Biden’s proposed infrastructure bill. So, we think W.W. Grainger (GWW) and Fastenal (FAST) could benefit. But which of these stocks is a better buy now? Read more to find out.W.W. Grainger, Inc. (GWW) in Lake Forest, Ill., distributes maintenance, repair, and operating products and services internationally. The company provides material handling equipment, safety and security supplies, and lighting and electrical products. In comparison, Fastenal Company (NASDAQ:FAST), which is headquartered in Winona, Minn., engages in the wholesale distribution of industrial and construction supplies internationally. It offers fasteners and related industrial and construction supplies under the Fastenal name.

The continued spread of COVID-19, along with an inflationary environment, are causes for concern for investors seeking to benefit from the economic recovery. However, the Fed’s continued near-zero interest rate policy, rapid vaccination programs, and supportive government policies have boosted the industrial sector’s growth. Furthermore, President Biden's bipartisan infrastructure bill proposal, which includes $550 billion in new spending for building roads, rails, and bridges, among others, is expected to help the sector grow significantly in the coming months. So, both GWW and FAST should benefit.

GWW has gained 5.2% in price over the past three months, while FAST has returned 3.7%. Also, GWW’s 26.4% gains over the past nine months are higher than FAST’s 22.3% returns. And GWW is the clear winner with 17.5% gains versus FAST’s 9.9% returns in terms of their past months’ performance.

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W.W. Grainger vs. Fastenal: Which Industrial Stock is a Better Buy?
 

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