How Does Mortgage Advice Bureau (Holdings) PLC (LON:MAB1) Affect Your Portfolio Volatility?

Anyone researching Mortgage Advice Bureau (Holdings) PLC (LON:MAB1) might want to consider the historical volatility of the share price. Modern finance theory considers volatility to be a measure of risk, and there are two main types of price volatility. The first category is company specific volatility. This can be dealt with by limiting your exposure to any particular stock. The second sort is caused by the natural volatility of markets, overall. For example, certain macroeconomic events will impact (virtually) all stocks on the market.

Some stocks mimic the volatility of the market quite closely, while others demonstrate muted, exagerrated or uncorrelated price movements. Beta is a widely used metric to measure a stock’s exposure to market risk (volatility). Before we go on, it’s worth noting that Warren Buffett pointed out in his 2014 letter to shareholders that ‘volatility is far from synonymous with risk.’ Having said that, beta can still be rather useful. The first thing to understand about beta is that the beta of the overall market is one. Any stock with a beta of greater than one is considered more volatile than the market, while those with a beta below one are either less volatile or poorly correlated with the market.

View our latest analysis for Mortgage Advice Bureau (Holdings)

What MAB1’s beta value tells investors

Looking at the last five years, Mortgage Advice Bureau (Holdings) has a beta of 0.89. The fact that this is well below 1 indicates that its share price movements haven’t historically been very sensitive to overall market volatility. This means that — if history is a guide — buying the stock would reduce the impact of overall market volatility in many portfolios (depending on the beta of the portfolio, of course). Beta is worth considering, but it’s also important to consider whether Mortgage Advice Bureau (Holdings) is growing earnings and revenue. You can take a look for yourself, below.

AIM:MAB1 Income Statement, March 5th 2019
AIM:MAB1 Income Statement, March 5th 2019

How does MAB1’s size impact its beta?

With a market capitalisation of UK£294m, Mortgage Advice Bureau (Holdings) is a very small company by global standards. It is quite likely to be unknown to most investors. Companies with market capitalisations around this size often show poor correlation with the broader market because market volatility is overshadowed by company specific events, or other factors. It’s worth checking to see how often shares are traded, because very small companies with very low beta values are often only thinly traded.

What this means for you:

One potential advantage of owning low beta stocks like Mortgage Advice Bureau (Holdings) is that your overall portfolio won’t be too sensitive to overall market movements. However, this can be a blessing or a curse, depending on what’s happening in the broader market. This article aims to educate investors about beta values, but it’s well worth looking at important company-specific fundamentals such as Mortgage Advice Bureau (Holdings)’s financial health and performance track record. I urge you to continue your research by taking a look at the following:

  1. Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for MAB1’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for MAB1’s outlook.
  2. Past Track Record: Has MAB1 been consistently performing well irrespective of the ups and downs in the market? Go into more detail in the past performance analysis and take a look at the free visual representations of MAB1’s historicals for more clarity.
  3. Other Interesting Stocks: It’s worth checking to see how MAB1 measures up against other companies on valuation. You could start with this free list of prospective options.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.