With a price-to-earnings (or "P/E") ratio of 2.2x DRA Global Limited (ASX:DRA) may be sending very bullish signals at the moment, given that almost half of all companies in Australia have P/E ratios greater than 17x and even P/E's higher than 32x are not unusual. Nonetheless, we'd need to dig a little deeper to determine if there is a rational basis for the highly reduced P/E.
With earnings growth that's exceedingly strong of late, DRA Global has been doing very well. It might be that many expect the strong earnings performance to degrade substantially, which has repressed the P/E. If you like the company, you'd be hoping this isn't the case so that you could potentially pick up some stock while it's out of favour.free report on DRA Global's earnings, revenue and cash flow.
How Is DRA Global's Growth Trending?
DRA Global's P/E ratio would be typical for a company that's expected to deliver very poor growth or even falling earnings, and importantly, perform much worse than the market.
If we review the last year of earnings growth, the company posted a terrific increase of 213%. However, the latest three year period hasn't been as great in aggregate as it didn't manage to provide any growth at all. So it appears to us that the company has had a mixed result in terms of growing earnings over that time.
Weighing that recent medium-term earnings trajectory against the broader market's one-year forecast for expansion of 19% shows it's noticeably less attractive on an annualised basis.
In light of this, it's understandable that DRA Global's P/E sits below the majority of other companies. It seems most investors are expecting to see the recent limited growth rates continue into the future and are only willing to pay a reduced amount for the stock.
What We Can Learn From DRA Global's P/E?
Typically, we'd caution against reading too much into price-to-earnings ratios when settling on investment decisions, though it can reveal plenty about what other market participants think about the company.
We've established that DRA Global maintains its low P/E on the weakness of its recent three-year growth being lower than the wider market forecast, as expected. Right now shareholders are accepting the low P/E as they concede future earnings probably won't provide any pleasant surprises. Unless the recent medium-term conditions improve, they will continue to form a barrier for the share price around these levels.
Don't forget that there may be other risks. For instance, we've identified 3 warning signs for DRA Global (1 makes us a bit uncomfortable) you should be aware of.
It's important to make sure you look for a great company, not just the first idea you come across. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies with strong recent earnings growth (and a P/E ratio below 20x).
Valuation is complex, but we're helping make it simple.
Find out whether DRA Global is potentially over or undervalued by checking out our comprehensive analysis, which includes fair value estimates, risks and warnings, dividends, insider transactions and financial health.View the Free Analysis
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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.