Declining Stock and Decent Financials: Is The Market Wrong About Taylor Wimpey plc (LON:TW.)?

By
Simply Wall St
Published
January 17, 2022
LSE:TW.
Source: Shutterstock

With its stock down 11% over the past week, it is easy to disregard Taylor Wimpey (LON:TW.). But if you pay close attention, you might find that its key financial indicators look quite decent, which could mean that the stock could potentially rise in the long-term given how markets usually reward more resilient long-term fundamentals. Specifically, we decided to study Taylor Wimpey's ROE in this article.

ROE or return on equity is a useful tool to assess how effectively a company can generate returns on the investment it received from its shareholders. In simpler terms, it measures the profitability of a company in relation to shareholder's equity.

View our latest analysis for Taylor Wimpey

How Do You Calculate Return On Equity?

ROE 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 Taylor Wimpey is:

12% = UK£484m ÷ UK£4.1b (Based on the trailing twelve months to July 2021).

The 'return' is the yearly profit. So, this means that for every £1 of its shareholder's investments, the company generates a profit of £0.12.

What Has ROE Got To Do With Earnings Growth?

We have already established that ROE serves as an efficient profit-generating gauge for a company's future earnings. 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. Generally speaking, other things being equal, firms with a high return on equity and profit retention, have a higher growth rate than firms that don’t share these attributes.

Taylor Wimpey's Earnings Growth And 12% ROE

At first glance, Taylor Wimpey seems to have a decent ROE. Even when compared to the industry average of 11% the company's ROE looks quite decent. However, while Taylor Wimpey has a pretty respectable ROE, its five year net income decline rate was 6.8% . Based on this, we feel that there might be other reasons which haven't been discussed so far in this article that could be hampering the company's growth. For example, it could be that the company has a high payout ratio or the business has allocated capital poorly, for instance.

With the industry earnings declining at a rate of 8.3% in the same period, we deduce that both the company and the industry are shrinking at the same rate.

past-earnings-growth
LSE:TW. Past Earnings Growth January 17th 2022

The basis for attaching value to a company is, to a great extent, tied to its earnings growth. It’s important for an investor to know whether the market has priced in the company's expected earnings growth (or decline). By doing so, they will have an idea if the stock is headed into clear blue waters or if swampy waters await. Is TW. fairly valued? This infographic on the company's intrinsic value has everything you need to know.

Is Taylor Wimpey Making Efficient Use Of Its Profits?

Looking at its three-year median payout ratio of 30% (or a retention ratio of 70%) which is pretty normal, Taylor Wimpey'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. So there could be some other explanations in that regard. For instance, the company's business may be deteriorating.

In addition, Taylor Wimpey has been paying dividends over a period of at least ten years suggesting that keeping up dividend payments is way more important to the management even if it comes at the cost of business growth. Looking at the current analyst consensus data, we can see that the company's future payout ratio is expected to rise to 61% over the next three years. Regardless, the future ROE for Taylor Wimpey is speculated to rise to 16% despite the anticipated increase in the payout ratio. There could probably be other factors that could be driving the future growth in the ROE.

Summary

Overall, we feel that Taylor Wimpey certainly does have some positive factors to consider. However, given the high ROE and high profit retention, we would expect the company to be delivering strong earnings growth, but that isn't the case here. This suggests that there might be some external threat to the business, that's hampering its growth. With that said, we studied the latest analyst forecasts and found that while the company has shrunk its earnings in the past, analysts expect its earnings to grow in the future. Are these analysts expectations based on the broad expectations for the industry, or on the company's fundamentals? Click here to be taken to our analyst's forecasts page for the company.

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