Bechtle (ETR:BC8) has had a great run on the share market with its stock up by a significant 16% over the last month. Since the market usually pay for a company’s long-term fundamentals, we decided to study the company’s key performance indicators to see if they could be influencing the market. In this article, we decided to focus on Bechtle's ROE.
Return on equity or ROE is a key measure used to assess how efficiently a company's management is utilizing the company's capital. Put another way, it reveals the company's success at turning shareholder investments into profits.
How Do You Calculate Return On Equity?
The formula for ROE is:
Return on Equity = Net Profit (from continuing operations) ÷ Shareholders' Equity
So, based on the above formula, the ROE for Bechtle is:
17% = €170m ÷ €1.0b (Based on the trailing twelve months to December 2019).
The 'return' is the amount earned after tax over the last twelve months. That means that for every €1 worth of shareholders' equity, the company generated €0.17 in profit.
What Is The Relationship Between ROE And Earnings Growth?
We have already established that ROE serves as an efficient profit-generating gauge for a company's future earnings. We now need to evaluate how much profit the company reinvests or "retains" for future growth which then gives us an idea about the growth potential of the company. Generally speaking, other things being equal, firms with a high return on equity and profit retention, have a higher growth rate than firms that don’t share these attributes.
A Side By Side comparison of Bechtle's Earnings Growth And 17% ROE
At first glance, Bechtle seems to have a decent ROE. On comparing with the average industry ROE of 13% the company's ROE looks pretty remarkable. This certainly adds some context to Bechtle's decent 15% net income growth seen over the past five years.
Next, on comparing with the industry net income growth, we found that Bechtle's reported growth was lower than the industry growth of 22% in the same period, which is not something we like to see.
The basis for attaching value to a company is, to a great extent, tied to its earnings growth. The investor should try to establish if the expected growth or decline in earnings, whichever the case may be, is priced in. By doing so, they will have an idea if the stock is headed into clear blue waters or if swampy waters await. One good indicator of expected earnings growth is the P/E ratio which determines the price the market is willing to pay for a stock based on its earnings prospects. So, you may want to check if Bechtle is trading on a high P/E or a low P/E, relative to its industry.
Is Bechtle Using Its Retained Earnings Effectively?
Bechtle has a three-year median payout ratio of 31%, which implies that it retains the remaining 69% of its profits. This suggests that its dividend is well covered, and given the decent growth seen by the company, it looks like management is reinvesting its earnings efficiently.
Additionally, Bechtle has paid dividends over a period of at least ten years which means that the company is pretty serious about sharing its profits with shareholders. Based on the latest analysts' estimates, we found that the company's future payout ratio over the next three years is expected to hold steady at 29%. Accordingly, forecasts suggest that Bechtle's future ROE will be 15% which is again, similar to the current ROE.
In total, we are pretty happy with Bechtle's performance. In particular, it's great to see that the company is investing heavily into its business and along with a high rate of return, that has resulted in a respectable growth in its earnings. Having said that, the company's earnings growth is expected to slow down, as forecasted in the current analyst estimates. To know more about the company's future earnings growth forecasts take a look at this free report on analyst forecasts for the company to find out more.
If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at email@example.com. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned.
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