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Is Strategic Minerals Plc's (LON:SML) Recent Price Movement Underpinned By Its Weak Fundamentals?

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It is hard to get excited after looking at Strategic Minerals' (LON:SML) recent performance, when its stock has declined 5.3% over the past month. It seems that the market might have completely ignored the positive aspects of the company's fundamentals and decided to weigh-in more on the negative aspects. Stock prices are usually driven by a company’s financial performance over the long term, and therefore we decided to pay more attention to the company's financial performance. In this article, we decided to focus on Strategic Minerals' ROE.

ROE or return on equity is a useful tool to assess how effectively a company can generate returns on the investment it received from its shareholders. In simpler terms, it measures the profitability of a company in relation to shareholder's equity.

Check out our latest analysis for Strategic Minerals

How Do You Calculate Return On Equity?

The formula for return on equity is:

Return on Equity = Net Profit (from continuing operations) ÷ Shareholders' Equity

So, based on the above formula, the ROE for Strategic Minerals is:

1.6% = US$214k ÷ US$14m (Based on the trailing twelve months to December 2020).

The 'return' is the yearly profit. So, this means that for every £1 of its shareholder's investments, the company generates a profit of £0.02.

What Is The Relationship Between ROE And Earnings Growth?

So far, we've learned that ROE is a measure of a company's profitability. Depending on how much of these profits the company reinvests or "retains", and how effectively it does so, we are then able to assess a company’s earnings growth potential. Assuming everything else remains unchanged, the higher the ROE and profit retention, the higher the growth rate of a company compared to companies that don't necessarily bear these characteristics.

Strategic Minerals' Earnings Growth And 1.6% ROE

It is quite clear that Strategic Minerals' ROE is rather low. Even when compared to the industry average of 18%, the ROE figure is pretty disappointing. Given the circumstances, the significant decline in net income by 5.6% seen by Strategic Minerals over the last five years is not surprising. We reckon that there could also be other factors at play here. Such as - low earnings retention or poor allocation of capital.

That being said, we compared Strategic Minerals' performance with the industry and were concerned when we found that while the company has shrunk its earnings, the industry has grown its earnings at a rate of 21% in the same period.

past-earnings-growth
past-earnings-growth

Earnings growth is a huge factor in stock valuation. The investor should try to establish if the expected growth or decline in earnings, whichever the case may be, is priced in. This then helps them determine if the stock is placed for a bright or bleak future. Is Strategic Minerals fairly valued compared to other companies? These 3 valuation measures might help you decide.

Is Strategic Minerals Using Its Retained Earnings Effectively?

Strategic Minerals doesn't pay any dividend, meaning that potentially all of its profits are being reinvested in the business, which doesn't explain why the company's earnings have shrunk if it is retaining all of its profits. So there might be other factors at play here which could potentially be hampering growth. For example, the business has faced some headwinds.

Conclusion

Overall, we have mixed feelings about Strategic Minerals. While the company does have a high rate of profit retention, its low rate of return is probably hampering its earnings growth. Wrapping up, we would proceed with caution with this company and one way of doing that would be to look at the risk profile of the business. You can see the 4 risks we have identified for Strategic Minerals by visiting our risks dashboard for free on our platform here.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.

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