Maggie Beer Holdings' (ASX:MBH) Robust Earnings Are Not All Good News For Shareholders

By
Simply Wall St
Published
August 25, 2021
ASX:MBH
Source: Shutterstock

We didn't see Maggie Beer Holdings Limited's (ASX:MBH) stock surge when it reported robust earnings recently. We decided to have a deeper look, and we believe that investors might be worried about several concerning factors that we found.

View our latest analysis for Maggie Beer Holdings

earnings-and-revenue-history
ASX:MBH Earnings and Revenue History August 25th 2021

In order to understand the potential for per share returns, it is essential to consider how much a company is diluting shareholders. In fact, Maggie Beer Holdings increased the number of shares on issue by 69% over the last twelve months by issuing new shares. As a result, its net income is now split between a greater number of shares. To talk about net income, without noticing earnings per share, is to be distracted by the big numbers while ignoring the smaller numbers that talk to per share value. You can see a chart of Maggie Beer Holdings' EPS by clicking here.

How Is Dilution Impacting Maggie Beer Holdings' Earnings Per Share? (EPS)

Three years ago, Maggie Beer Holdings lost money. Zooming in to the last year, we still can't talk about growth rates coherently, since it made a loss last year. But mathematics aside, it is always good to see when a formerly unprofitable business come good (though we accept profit would have been higher if dilution had not been required). Therefore, one can observe that the dilution is having a fairly profound effect on shareholder returns.

If Maggie Beer Holdings' EPS can grow over time then that drastically improves the chances of the share price moving in the same direction. But on the other hand, we'd be far less excited to learn profit (but not EPS) was improving. For that reason, you could say that EPS is more important that net income in the long run, assuming the goal is to assess whether a company's share price might grow.

Note: we always recommend investors check balance sheet strength. Click here to be taken to our balance sheet analysis of Maggie Beer Holdings.

The Impact Of Unusual Items On Profit

Alongside that dilution, it's also important to note that Maggie Beer Holdings' profit was boosted by unusual items worth AU$892k in the last twelve months. We can't deny that higher profits generally leave us optimistic, but we'd prefer it if the profit were to be sustainable. When we analysed the vast majority of listed companies worldwide, we found that significant unusual items are often not repeated. And, after all, that's exactly what the accounting terminology implies. Maggie Beer Holdings had a rather significant contribution from unusual items relative to its profit to June 2021. As a result, we can surmise that the unusual items are making its statutory profit significantly stronger than it would otherwise be.

Our Take On Maggie Beer Holdings' Profit Performance

To sum it all up, Maggie Beer Holdings got a nice boost to profit from unusual items; without that, its statutory results would have looked worse. On top of that, the dilution means that its earnings per share performance is worse than its profit performance. For the reasons mentioned above, we think that a perfunctory glance at Maggie Beer Holdings' statutory profits might make it look better than it really is on an underlying level. So if you'd like to dive deeper into this stock, it's crucial to consider any risks it's facing. To help with this, we've discovered 2 warning signs (1 makes us a bit uncomfortable!) that you ought to be aware of before buying any shares in Maggie Beer Holdings.

In this article we've looked at a number of factors that can impair the utility of profit numbers, and we've come away cautious. But there is always more to discover if you are capable of focussing your mind on minutiae. Some people consider a high return on equity to be a good sign of a quality business. So you may wish to see this free collection of companies boasting high return on equity, or this list of stocks that insiders are buying.

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