Is The Market Rewarding Orora Limited (ASX:ORA) With A Negative Sentiment As A Result Of Its Mixed Fundamentals?

By
Simply Wall St
Published
April 06, 2022
ASX:ORA
Source: Shutterstock

With its stock down 2.2% over the past week, it is easy to disregard Orora (ASX:ORA). It is possible that the markets have ignored the company's differing financials and decided to lean-in to the negative sentiment. Fundamentals usually dictate market outcomes so it makes sense to study the company's financials. Particularly, we will be paying attention to Orora's ROE today.

ROE or return on equity is a useful tool to assess how effectively a company can generate returns on the investment it received from its shareholders. In short, ROE shows the profit each dollar generates with respect to its shareholder investments.

View our latest analysis for Orora

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 Orora is:

19% = AU$148m ÷ AU$786m (Based on the trailing twelve months to December 2021).

The 'return' is the profit over the last twelve months. So, this means that for every A$1 of its shareholder's investments, the company generates a profit of A$0.19.

Why Is ROE Important For Earnings Growth?

We have already established that ROE serves as an efficient profit-generating gauge for a company's future earnings. We now need to evaluate how much profit the company reinvests or "retains" for future growth which then gives us an idea about the growth potential of the company. 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 Orora's Earnings Growth And 19% ROE

To start with, Orora's ROE looks acceptable. Especially when compared to the industry average of 10% the company's ROE looks pretty impressive. For this reason, Orora's five year net income decline of 17% raises the question as to why the high ROE didn't translate into earnings growth. We reckon that there could be some other factors at play here that are preventing the company's growth. Such as, the company pays out a huge portion of its earnings as dividends, or is faced with competitive pressures.

So, as a next step, we compared Orora's performance against the industry and were disappointed to discover that while the company has been shrinking its earnings, the industry has been growing its earnings at a rate of 8.1% in the same period.

past-earnings-growth
ASX:ORA Past Earnings Growth April 6th 2022

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

Is Orora Efficiently Re-investing Its Profits?

Orora's very high three-year median payout ratio of 138% over the last three years suggests that the company is paying its shareholders more than what it is earning and this explains the company's shrinking earnings. Paying a dividend higher than reported profits is not a sustainable move. You can see the 2 risks we have identified for Orora by visiting our risks dashboard for free on our platform here.

In addition, Orora has been paying dividends over a period of eight years suggesting that keeping up dividend payments is preferred by the management even though earnings have been in decline. Existing analyst estimates suggest that the company's future payout ratio is expected to drop to 76% over the next three years. Accordingly, the expected drop in the payout ratio explains the expected increase in the company's ROE to 27%, over the same period.

Summary

In total, we're a bit ambivalent about Orora's performance. Despite the high ROE, the company has a disappointing earnings growth number, due to its poor rate of reinvestment into its business. Having said that, looking at current analyst estimates, we found that the company's earnings growth rate is expected to see a huge improvement. To know more about the company's future earnings growth forecasts take a look at this free report on analyst forecasts for the company to find out more.

Discounted cash flow calculation for every stock

Simply Wall St does a detailed discounted cash flow calculation every 6 hours for every stock on the market, so if you want to find the intrinsic value of any company just search here. It’s FREE.

Make Confident Investment Decisions

Simply Wall St's Editorial Team provides unbiased, factual reporting on global stocks using in-depth fundamental analysis.
Find out more about our editorial guidelines and team.