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When considering stocks, the ideal situation is for a company to have a sizeable cash reserve and as little debt as possible. In this way, a company has a lot of freedom and mobility to pursue both strategic and creative paths while not feeling limited by the constraining pressure to pay back what is owed. With this perspective in mind, we developed a short list of industrial stocks that are loaded with cash and have minimal debt. We think you will be intrigued by what we uncovered.

The Debt/Equity Ratio illustrates how aggressively a company is financing its growth via debt. The more debt financing that is used in a capital structure, the more volatile earnings can become due to the additional interest expense. Should a company's potentially enhanced earnings fail to exceed the cost associated with debt financing over time, this can lead the company toward substantial trouble.

The Current ratio is a liquidity ratio used to determine a company's financial health. The metric illustrates how easily a firm can pay back its short obligations all at once through current assets. A company that has a current ratio of one or less is generally a liquidity red flag. Now this doesn't mean the company will go bankrupt tomorrow, but it also doesn't bode well for the company, and may indicate that it could have an issue paying back upcoming obligations.

The Quick ratio measures a company's ability to use its cash or assets to extinguish its current liabilities immediately. Quick assets include assets that presumably can be converted to cash at close to their book values. A company with a Quick Ratio of less than 1 cannot currently pay back its current liabilities. The quick ratio is more conservative than the Current Ratio because it excludes inventory from current assets, since some companies have difficulty turning their inventory into cash. If short-term obligations need to be paid off immediately, sometimes the current ratio would overestimate a company's short-term financial strength. In general, the higher the ratio, the greater the company's liquidity (i.e., the better able to meet current obligations using liquid assets).

We first looked for industrial stocks. We then screened for businesses that operate with little to no debt (D/E Ratio<.1). We then screened for businesses with a large amount of cash on hand (Current Ratio>2)(Quick Ratio>2). We did not screen out any market caps.

Do you think these stocks are undervalued and should be trading higher? Use our list to help with your own analysis.

1) LMI Aerospace Inc. (NASDAQ:LMIA)

SectorIndustrial Goods
IndustryAerospace/Defense Products & Services
Market Cap$235.29M
Beta1.35

LMIA stock chart

Key Metrics

Debt/Equity Ratio0.01
Current Ratio4.60
Quick Ratio2.41
Short Interest2.86%

LMI Aerospace, Inc. provides design engineering services, structural assemblies, kits, and components to the aerospace, defense, and technology markets primarily in the United States. The company operates in two segments, Aerostructures and Engineering Services. The Aerostructures segment fabricates, machines, finishes, integrates, assembles, and kits formed close tolerance aluminum, specialty alloy, and composite components, as well as higher level assemblies.

Its aerospace products include wing slats and flapskins; winglet leading edges and related wing modification kits; fuselage and wing skins; helicopter cabin, aft section, and pylon components and assemblies; door surrounds, components, assemblies, and floorbeams; thrust reversers and engine nacelles/cowlings; cockpit window frames and landing light lens assemblies; interior components; structural sheet metal and extruded components; tailcone assemblies; and housings and assemblies. This segment also offers value-added services related to the design, production, assembly, and distribution of aerospace components.

The Engineering Services segment provides design, engineering, and program management services, such as structural design and analysis, systems design and integration, tool design and fabrication, certification planning support, risk mitigation and producibility trade studies, and the development of program schedules and resource planning. Its services include wing/wingbox, fixed and moveable leading edges/trailing edges, fuselage, empennage, and tailcone design; winglet/wing mod design; nacelle, engine cowl, and thrust reverser design; weight improvement engineering; helicopter fuselage, cockpit, cabin frames, skins, longerons, and beams; aircraft modification engineering; aviation training system; aviation maintenance engineering; manufacturing engineering; and aviation system software engineering. The company was founded in 1948 and is based in St. Charles, Missouri.

2) Matrix Service Co. (NASDAQ:MTRX)

SectorIndustrial Goods
IndustryHeavy Construction
Market Cap$296.15M
Beta1.80

MTRX stock chart

Key Metrics

Debt/Equity Ratio0.01
Current Ratio2.28
Quick Ratio2.25
Short Interest2.86%

Matrix Service Company provides construction, and repair and maintenance services primarily to the energy and energy related industries in the United States and internationally. The company operates in two segments, Construction Services, and Repair and Maintenance Services. The Construction Services segment offers aboveground storage tanks for the bulk storage/terminal industry, capital construction for the downstream petroleum industry, and specialty construction, as well as electrical/instrumentation services, such as civil/structural, mechanical, piping, electrical and instrumentation, millwrighting, and fabrication for various industries. This segment focuses on renovations, retrofits, modifications, and expansions to existing facilities, as well as construction of new facilities.

The Repair and Maintenance Services segment provides aboveground storage tank repair and maintenance services, including tank inspection, cleaning, and American Society of Mechanical Engineers code repairs; planned major and routine maintenance for the downstream petroleum industry; specialty repair and maintenance services; and electrical and instrumentation repair and maintenance. It serves integrated oil companies, independent petroleum refiners, power companies, engineering firms, general contractors, and petrochemical and industrial gas companies, as well as pipeline, terminal, and oil and gas marketing companies. The company was founded in 1989 and is headquartered in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

3) Mueller Industries Inc. (NYSE:MLI)

SectorIndustrial Goods
IndustryMetal Fabrication
Market Cap$1.68B
Beta0.93

MLI stock chart

Key Metrics

Debt/Equity Ratio0.04
Current Ratio3.93
Quick Ratio2.97
Short Interest1.73%

Mueller Industries, Inc. engages in the manufacture and sale of copper, brass, plastic, and aluminum products in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Great Britain, and China. It operates in two segments, Plumbing and Refrigeration, and Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM). The Plumbing and Refrigeration segment offers copper tubes in straight lengths and coils for plumbing applications; copper and plastic fittings, line sets, and related components for use in water distribution systems, heating systems, air-conditioning, and refrigeration applications, as well as for drainage, waste, and vent systems.

It also fabricates steel pipe nipples; and resells imported brass and plastic plumbing valves, malleable iron fittings, faucets, and plumbing specialty products to plumbing wholesalers and building materials retailers, as well as to distributors of manufactured housing and recreational vehicle industries. This segment markets its products directly, as well as through a network of agents. The OEM segment manufactures and sells brass, bronze, and copper alloy rods for applications that require a high degree of machinability, wear and corrosion resistance, and electrical conductivity; brass and aluminum forgings for use in various products, including automotive components, brass fittings, industrial machinery, valve bodies, gear blanks, and computer hardware; and cold-formed aluminum and copper impact extrusions for use in automotive, military ordnance, aerospace, and general manufacturing industries.

It also manufactures and fabricates valves and custom OEM products for refrigeration and air-conditioning, gas appliance, and barbecue grill applications; and manufactures shaped and formed tube for baseboard heating, appliances, and medical instruments. This segment sells its products directly to OEMs, as well as to other manufacturers and distributors. The company was founded in 1900 and is headquartered in Memphis, Tennessee.

*Company profiles were sourced from Google Finance and Yahoo Finance. Financial data was sourced from Finviz on 09/06/2012.

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.

Business relationship disclosure: This article was prepared for ZetaKap Media by one of our full-time analysts. We did not receive compensation for this article (other than from Seeking Alpha), and we have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

Source: 3 Industrial Stocks With Cash On Hand And Minimal Debt