This article is written for those who want to get better at using price to earnings ratios (P/E ratios). We’ll apply a basic P/E ratio analysis to TTM Technologies, Inc.’s (NASDAQ:TTMI), to help you decide if the stock is worth further research. TTM Technologies has a price to earnings ratio of 16.18, based on the last twelve months. That is equivalent to an earnings yield of about 6.2%.
How Do You Calculate A P/E Ratio?
The formula for P/E is:
Price to Earnings Ratio = Price per Share ÷ Earnings per Share (EPS)
Or for TTM Technologies:
P/E of 16.18 = $12.36 ÷ $0.76 (Based on the trailing twelve months to July 2019.)
Is A High Price-to-Earnings Ratio Good?
A higher P/E ratio implies that investors pay a higher price for the earning power of the business. All else being equal, it’s better to pay a low price — but as Warren Buffett said, ‘It’s far better to buy a wonderful company at a fair price than a fair company at a wonderful price.
How Does TTM Technologies’s P/E Ratio Compare To Its Peers?
One good way to get a quick read on what market participants expect of a company is to look at its P/E ratio. The image below shows that TTM Technologies has a lower P/E than the average (20.3) P/E for companies in the electronic industry.
TTM Technologies’s P/E tells us that market participants think it will not fare as well as its peers in the same industry. Since the market seems unimpressed with TTM Technologies, it’s quite possible it could surprise on the upside. You should delve deeper. I like to check if company insiders have been buying or selling.
How Growth Rates Impact P/E Ratios
Generally speaking the rate of earnings growth has a profound impact on a company’s P/E multiple. That’s because companies that grow earnings per share quickly will rapidly increase the ‘E’ in the equation. And in that case, the P/E ratio itself will drop rather quickly. So while a stock may look expensive based on past earnings, it could be cheap based on future earnings.
TTM Technologies saw earnings per share decrease by 52% last year. But EPS is up 60% over the last 3 years.
A Limitation: P/E Ratios Ignore Debt and Cash In The Bank
One drawback of using a P/E ratio is that it considers market capitalization, but not the balance sheet. In other words, it does not consider any debt or cash that the company may have on the balance sheet. In theory, a company can lower its future P/E ratio by using cash or debt to invest in growth.
Such expenditure might be good or bad, in the long term, but the point here is that the balance sheet is not reflected by this ratio.
Is Debt Impacting TTM Technologies’s P/E?
TTM Technologies’s net debt is 92% of its market cap. This is a reasonably significant level of debt — all else being equal you’d expect a much lower P/E than if it had net cash.
The Bottom Line On TTM Technologies’s P/E Ratio
TTM Technologies has a P/E of 16.2. That’s below the average in the US market, which is 18.0. When you consider that the company has significant debt, and didn’t grow EPS last year, it isn’t surprising that the market has muted expectations.
Investors should be looking to buy stocks that the market is wrong about. As value investor Benjamin Graham famously said, ‘In the short run, the market is a voting machine but in the long run, it is a weighing machine. So this free report on the analyst consensus forecasts could help you make a master move on this stock.
Of course you might be able to find a better stock than TTM Technologies. So you may wish to see this free collection of other companies that have grown earnings strongly.
We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.
If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at firstname.lastname@example.org. 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. Thank you for reading.