Zero-debt allows substantial financial flexibility, especially for small-cap companies like KFG Resources Ltd (CVE:KFG), as the company does not have to adhere to strict debt covenants. However, it also faces higher cost of capital given interest cost is generally lower than equity. While KFG has no debt on its balance sheet, it doesn’t necessarily mean it exhibits financial strength. I will take you through a few basic checks to assess the financial health of companies with no debt.
Is financial flexibility worth the lower cost of capital?
Debt funding can be cheaper than issuing new equity due to lower interest cost on debt. However, the trade-off is debtholders’ higher claim on company assets in the event of liquidation and stringent obligations around capital management. Either KFG does not have access to cheap capital, or it may believe this trade-off is not worth it. This makes sense only if the company has a competitive edge and is growing fast off its equity capital. A single-digit revenue growth of 5.0% for KFG is considerably low for a small-cap company. While its low growth hardly justifies opting for zero-debt, the company may have high growth projects in the pipeline to justify the trade-off.
Can KFG pay its short-term liabilities?
Given zero long-term debt on its balance sheet, KFG Resources has no solvency issues, which is used to describe the company’s ability to meet its long-term obligations. But another important aspect of financial health is liquidity: the company’s ability to meet short-term obligations, including payments to suppliers and employees. At the current liabilities level of US$577k liabilities, it appears that the company has been able to meet these obligations given the level of current assets of US$1m, with a current ratio of 1.98x. For Oil and Gas companies, this ratio is within a sensible range since there’s a sufficient cash cushion without leaving too much capital idle or in low-earning investments.
KFG is a fast-growing firm, which supports having have zero-debt and financial freedom to continue to ramp up growth. This may mean this is an optimal capital structure for the business, given that it is also meeting its short-term commitment. Moving forward, its financial position may be different. I admit this is a fairly basic analysis for KFG’s financial health. Other important fundamentals need to be considered alongside. You should continue to research KFG Resources to get a better picture of the stock by looking at:
- Valuation: What is KFG worth today? Is the stock undervalued, even when its growth outlook is factored into its intrinsic value? The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether KFG is currently mispriced by the market.
- Historical Performance: What has KFG’s returns been like over the past? Go into more detail in the past track record analysis and take a look at the free visual representations of our analysis for more clarity.
- 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.
To help readers see past the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements.
The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at email@example.com.