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Touchstar plc (LON:TST) Stock's Been Sliding But Fundamentals Look Decent: Will The Market Correct The Share Price In The Future?

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It is hard to get excited after looking at Touchstar's (LON:TST) recent performance, when its stock has declined 30% over the past three months. However, stock prices are usually driven by a company’s financials over the long term, which in this case look pretty respectable. Particularly, we will be paying attention to Touchstar's ROE today.

Return on equity or ROE is an important factor to be considered by a shareholder because it tells them how effectively their capital is being reinvested. Put another way, it reveals the company's success at turning shareholder investments into profits.

View our latest analysis for Touchstar

How To 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 Touchstar is:

7.9% = UK£162k ÷ UK£2.0m (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2020).

The 'return' is the profit over the last twelve months. So, this means that for every £1 of its shareholder's investments, the company generates a profit of £0.08.

What Has ROE Got To Do With 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 all else is equal, companies that have both a higher return on equity and higher profit retention are usually the ones that have a higher growth rate when compared to companies that don't have the same features.

A Side By Side comparison of Touchstar's Earnings Growth And 7.9% ROE

When you first look at it, Touchstar's ROE doesn't look that attractive. However, its ROE is similar to the industry average of 7.7%, so we won't completely dismiss the company. Moreover, we are quite pleased to see that Touchstar's net income grew significantly at a rate of 33% over the last five years. Given the slightly low ROE, it is likely that there could be some other aspects that are driving this growth. Such as - high earnings retention or an efficient management in place.

As a next step, we compared Touchstar's net income growth with the industry, and pleasingly, we found that the growth seen by the company is higher than the average industry growth of 27%.

past-earnings-growth
past-earnings-growth

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. Is Touchstar fairly valued compared to other companies? These 3 valuation measures might help you decide.

Is Touchstar Using Its Retained Earnings Effectively?

Touchstar doesn't pay any dividend currently which essentially means that it has been reinvesting all of its profits into the business. This definitely contributes to the high earnings growth number that we discussed above.

Summary

On the whole, we do feel that Touchstar has some positive attributes. Despite its low rate of return, the fact that the company reinvests a very high portion of its profits into its business, no doubt contributed to its high earnings growth. While we won't completely dismiss the company, what we would do, is try to ascertain how risky the business is to make a more informed decision around the company. You can see the 4 risks we have identified for Touchstar by visiting our risks dashboard for free on our platform here.

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. 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.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team@simplywallst.com.

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