How Maximus Resources Limited (ASX:MXR) Can Impact Your Portfolio Volatility

If you are a shareholder in Maximus Resources Limited’s (ASX:MXR), or are thinking about investing in the company, knowing how it contributes to the risk and reward profile of your portfolio is important. Broadly speaking, there are two types of risk you should consider when investing in stocks such as MXR. The first risk to consider is company-specific, which can be diversified away when you invest in other companies in the same industry as MXR, because it is rare that an entire industry collapses at once. The second risk is market-wide, which arises from investing in the stock market. This risk reflects changes in economic and political factors that affects all stocks.

Not all stocks are expose to the same level of market risk. A widely-used metric to measure a stock’s market risk is beta, and the broad market index represents a beta value of one. Any stock with a beta of greater than one is considered more volatile than the market, and those with a beta less than one is generally less volatile.

Check out our latest analysis for Maximus Resources

An interpretation of MXR’s beta

Maximus Resources has a beta of 1.97, which means that the percentage change in its stock value will be higher than the entire market in times of booms and busts. A high level of beta means investors face higher risk associated with potential gains and losses driven by market movements. Based on this beta value, MXR may be a stock for investors with a portfolio mainly made up of low-beta stocks. This is because during times of bullish sentiment, you can reap more of the upside with high-beta stocks compared to muted movements of low-beta holdings.

ASX:MXR Income Statement May 13th 18
ASX:MXR Income Statement May 13th 18

Does MXR’s size and industry impact the expected beta?

A market capitalisation of AU$3.18M puts MXR in the category of small-cap stocks, which tends to possess higher beta than larger companies. In addition to size, MXR also operates in the metals and mining industry, which has commonly demonstrated strong reactions to market-wide shocks. As a result, we should expect higher beta for small-cap stocks in a cyclical industry compared to larger stocks in a defensive industry. This supports our interpretation of MXR’s beta value discussed above. Next, we will examine the fundamental factors which can cause cyclicality in the stock.

How MXR’s assets could affect its beta

During times of economic downturn, low demand may cause companies to readjust production of their goods and services. It is more difficult for companies to lower their cost, if the majority of these costs are generated by fixed assets. Therefore, this is a type of risk which is associated with higher beta. I examine MXR’s ratio of fixed assets to total assets to see whether the company is highly exposed to the risk of this type of constraint. Given a fixed to total assets ratio of over 30%, MXR seems to be a company which invests a big chunk of its capital on assets that cannot be scaled down on short-notice. Thus, we can expect MXR to be more volatile in the face of market movements, relative to its peers of similar size but with a lower proportion of fixed assets on their books. This is consistent with is current beta value which also indicates high volatility.

What this means for you:

You may reap the gains of MXR’s returns in times of an economic boom. Though the business does have higher fixed cost than what is considered safe, during times of growth, consumer demand may be high enough to not warrant immediate concerns. However, during a downturn, a more defensive stock can cushion the impact of this risk. In order to fully understand whether MXR is a good investment for you, we also need to consider important company-specific fundamentals such as Maximus Resources’s financial health and performance track record. I highly recommend you to complete your research by taking a look at the following:

  1. Financial Health: Is MXR’s operations financially sustainable? Balance sheets can be hard to analyze, which is why we’ve done it for you. Check out our financial health checks here.
  2. Past Track Record: Has MXR been consistently performing well irrespective of the ups and downs in the market? Go into more detail in the past performance analysis and take a look at the free visual representations of MXR’s historicals for more clarity.
  3. Other High-Performing Stocks: Are there other stocks that provide better prospects with proven track records? Explore our free list of these great stocks here.