Robust Earnings May Not Tell The Whole Story For Hospital Mater Dei (BVMF:MATD3)

By
Simply Wall St
Published
August 18, 2021
BOVESPA:MATD3
Source: Shutterstock

Hospital Mater Dei S.A. (BVMF:MATD3) just released a solid earnings report, and the stock displayed some strength. However, we think that shareholders should be cautious as we found some worrying factors underlying the profit.

See our latest analysis for Hospital Mater Dei

earnings-and-revenue-history
BOVESPA:MATD3 Earnings and Revenue History August 19th 2021

Zooming In On Hospital Mater Dei's Earnings

Many investors haven't heard of the accrual ratio from cashflow, but it is actually a useful measure of how well a company's profit is backed up by free cash flow (FCF) during a given period. To get the accrual ratio we first subtract FCF from profit for a period, and then divide that number by the average operating assets for the period. This ratio tells us how much of a company's profit is not backed by free cashflow.

That means a negative accrual ratio is a good thing, because it shows that the company is bringing in more free cash flow than its profit would suggest. That is not intended to imply we should worry about a positive accrual ratio, but it's worth noting where the accrual ratio is rather high. That's because some academic studies have suggested that high accruals ratios tend to lead to lower profit or less profit growth.

Hospital Mater Dei has an accrual ratio of 0.53 for the year to June 2021. Statistically speaking, that's a real negative for future earnings. To wit, the company did not generate one whit of free cashflow in that time. Even though it reported a profit of R$130.4m, a look at free cash flow indicates it actually burnt through R$103m in the last year. We saw that FCF was R$3.4m a year ago though, so Hospital Mater Dei has at least been able to generate positive FCF in the past.

That might leave you wondering what analysts are forecasting in terms of future profitability. Luckily, you can click here to see an interactive graph depicting future profitability, based on their estimates.

Our Take On Hospital Mater Dei's Profit Performance

As we discussed above, we think Hospital Mater Dei's earnings were not supported by free cash flow, which might concern some investors. For this reason, we think that Hospital Mater Dei's statutory profits may be a bad guide to its underlying earnings power, and might give investors an overly positive impression of the company. But at least holders can take some solace from the 34% per annum growth in EPS for the last three. At the end of the day, it's essential to consider more than just the factors above, if you want to understand the company properly. So if you'd like to dive deeper into this stock, it's crucial to consider any risks it's facing. At Simply Wall St, we found 1 warning sign for Hospital Mater Dei and we think they deserve your attention.

This note has only looked at a single factor that sheds light on the nature of Hospital Mater Dei's profit. But there is always more to discover if you are capable of focussing your mind on minutiae. For example, many people consider a high return on equity as an indication of favorable business economics, while others like to 'follow the money' and search out stocks that insiders are buying. While it might take a little research on your behalf, you may find this free collection of companies boasting high return on equity, or this list of stocks that insiders are buying to be useful.

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