Barco NV (EBR:BAR) Is Going Strong But Fundamentals Appear To Be Mixed : Is There A Clear Direction For The Stock?

By
Simply Wall St
Published
May 10, 2022
ENXTBR:BAR
Source: Shutterstock

Barco (EBR:BAR) has had a great run on the share market with its stock up by a significant 16% over the last three months. However, we wonder if the company's inconsistent financials would have any adverse impact on the current share price momentum. Specifically, we decided to study Barco's ROE in this article.

Return on equity or ROE is an important factor to be considered by a shareholder because it tells them how effectively their capital is being reinvested. Put another way, it reveals the company's success at turning shareholder investments into profits.

Check out our latest analysis for Barco

How To Calculate Return On Equity?

Return on equity can be calculated by using the formula:

Return on Equity = Net Profit (from continuing operations) ÷ Shareholders' Equity

So, based on the above formula, the ROE for Barco is:

1.3% = €9.8m ÷ €735m (Based on the trailing twelve months to December 2021).

The 'return' is the yearly profit. That means that for every €1 worth of shareholders' equity, the company generated €0.01 in profit.

What Is The Relationship Between ROE And Earnings Growth?

So far, we've learned that ROE is a measure of a company's profitability. 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 everything else remains unchanged, the higher the ROE and profit retention, the higher the growth rate of a company compared to companies that don't necessarily bear these characteristics.

Barco's Earnings Growth And 1.3% ROE

It is hard to argue that Barco's ROE is much good in and of itself. Not just that, even compared to the industry average of 12%, the company's ROE is entirely unremarkable. For this reason, Barco's five year net income decline of 5.9% is not surprising given its lower ROE. We reckon that there could also be other factors at play here. For instance, the company has a very high payout ratio, or is faced with competitive pressures.

However, when we compared Barco's growth with the industry we found that while the company's earnings have been shrinking, the industry has seen an earnings growth of 13% in the same period. This is quite worrisome.

past-earnings-growth
ENXTBR:BAR Past Earnings Growth May 10th 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. Doing so will help them establish if the stock's future looks promising or ominous. Has the market priced in the future outlook for BAR? You can find out in our latest intrinsic value infographic research report.

Is Barco Making Efficient Use Of Its Profits?

Looking at its three-year median payout ratio of 35% (or a retention ratio of 65%) which is pretty normal, Barco's declining earnings is rather baffling as one would expect to see a fair bit of growth when a company is retaining a good portion of its profits. It looks like there might be some other reasons to explain the lack in that respect. For example, the business could be in decline.

Additionally, Barco has paid dividends over a period of at least ten years, which means that the company's management is determined to pay dividends even if it means little to no earnings growth. Upon studying the latest analysts' consensus data, we found that the company is expected to keep paying out approximately 38% of its profits over the next three years. Regardless, the future ROE for Barco is predicted to rise to 16% despite there being not much change expected in its payout ratio.

Summary

In total, we're a bit ambivalent about Barco's performance. While the company does have a high rate of profit retention, its low rate of return is probably hampering its earnings growth. 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 latest analysts predictions for the company, check out this visualization of analyst forecasts for the company.

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