We Like These Underlying Return On Capital Trends At EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg (ETR:EBK)

Simply Wall St
April 22, 2022
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What are the early trends we should look for to identify a stock that could multiply in value over the long term? One common approach is to try and find a company with returns on capital employed (ROCE) that are increasing, in conjunction with a growing amount of capital employed. Ultimately, this demonstrates that it's a business that is reinvesting profits at increasing rates of return. So when we looked at EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg (ETR:EBK) and its trend of ROCE, we really liked what we saw.

Return On Capital Employed (ROCE): What is it?

For those that aren't sure what ROCE is, it measures the amount of pre-tax profits a company can generate from the capital employed in its business. The formula for this calculation on EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg is:

Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets - Current Liabilities)

0.03 = €1.1b ÷ (€71b - €34b) (Based on the trailing twelve months to December 2021).

Therefore, EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg has an ROCE of 3.0%. In absolute terms, that's a low return and it also under-performs the Electric Utilities industry average of 7.5%.

View our latest analysis for EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg

XTRA:EBK Return on Capital Employed April 22nd 2022

Historical performance is a great place to start when researching a stock so above you can see the gauge for EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg's ROCE against it's prior returns. If you'd like to look at how EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg has performed in the past in other metrics, you can view this free graph of past earnings, revenue and cash flow.

What Does the ROCE Trend For EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg Tell Us?

We're delighted to see that EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg is reaping rewards from its investments and is now generating some pre-tax profits. Shareholders would no doubt be pleased with this because the business was loss-making five years ago but is is now generating 3.0% on its capital. And unsurprisingly, like most companies trying to break into the black, EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg is utilizing 46% more capital than it was five years ago. This can indicate that there's plenty of opportunities to invest capital internally and at ever higher rates, both common traits of a multi-bagger.

For the record though, there was a noticeable increase in the company's current liabilities over the period, so we would attribute some of the ROCE growth to that. The current liabilities has increased to 48% of total assets, so the business is now more funded by the likes of its suppliers or short-term creditors. And with current liabilities at those levels, that's pretty high.

The Bottom Line

Long story short, we're delighted to see that EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg's reinvestment activities have paid off and the company is now profitable. And a remarkable 336% total return over the last five years tells us that investors are expecting more good things to come in the future. In light of that, we think it's worth looking further into this stock because if EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg can keep these trends up, it could have a bright future ahead.

If you'd like to know about the risks facing EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg, we've discovered 3 warning signs that you should be aware of.

While EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg may not currently earn the highest returns, we've compiled a list of companies that currently earn more than 25% return on equity. Check out this free list here.

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