Before You Buy Tanfield Group plc’s (LON:TAN), Consider This

If you are looking to invest in Tanfield Group plc’s (AIM:TAN), or currently own the stock, then you need to understand its beta in order to understand how it can affect the risk of your portfolio. Generally, an investor should consider two types of risk that impact the market value of TAN. The first risk to consider is company-specific, which can be diversified away when you invest in other companies in the same industry as TAN, because it is rare that an entire industry collapses at once. The second type is market risk, one that you cannot diversify away, since it arises from macroeconomic factors which directly affects all the stocks in the market.

Not every stock is exposed to the same level of market risk. A widely-used metric to measure a stock’s market risk is beta, and the broad market index represents a beta value of one. A stock with a beta greater than one is considered more sensitive to market-wide shocks compared to a stock that trades below the value of one.

See our latest analysis for Tanfield Group

What does TAN’s beta value mean?

Tanfield Group’s beta of 0.18 indicates that the company is less volatile relative to the diversified market portfolio. This means the stock is more defensive against the ups and downs of a stock market, moving by less than the entire market index in times of change. TAN’s beta implies it may be a stock that investors with high-beta portfolios might find relevant if they wanted to reduce their exposure to market risk, especially during times of downturns.

AIM:TAN Income Statement May 10th 18
AIM:TAN Income Statement May 10th 18

Could TAN’s size and industry cause it to be more volatile?

With a market cap of UK£18.22M, TAN falls within the small-cap spectrum of stocks, which are found to experience higher relative risk compared to larger companies. Moreover, TAN’s industry, capital markets, is considered to be cyclical, which means it is more volatile than the market over the economic cycle. Therefore, investors may expect high beta associated with small companies, as well as those operating in the capital markets industry, relative to those more well-established firms in a more defensive industry. It seems as though there is an inconsistency in risks portrayed by TAN’s size and industry relative to its actual beta value.

Is TAN’s cost structure indicative of a high beta?

During times of economic downturn, low demand may cause companies to readjust production of their goods and services. It is more difficult for companies to lower their cost, if the majority of these costs are generated by fixed assets. Therefore, this is a type of risk which is associated with higher beta. I examine TAN’s ratio of fixed assets to total assets to see whether the company is highly exposed to the risk of this type of constraint. Given that fixed assets make up an insignificant portion of total assets, TAN doesn’t rely heavily upon these expensive, inflexible assets to run its business during downturns. As a result, the company may be less volatile relative to broad market movements, compared to a company of similar size but higher proportion of fixed assets. This is consistent with is current beta value which also indicates low volatility.

What this means for you:

You could benefit from lower risk during times of economic decline by holding onto TAN. Take into account your portfolio sensitivity to the market before you invest in the stock, as well as where we are in the current economic cycle. Depending on the composition of your portfolio, TAN may be a valuable stock to hold onto in order to cushion the impact of a downturn. In order to fully understand whether TAN is a good investment for you, we also need to consider important company-specific fundamentals such as Tanfield Group’s financial health and performance track record. I highly recommend you to complete your research by taking a look at the following:

  1. Financial Health: Is TAN’s operations financially sustainable? Balance sheets can be hard to analyze, which is why we’ve done it for you. Check out our financial health checks here.
  2. Past Track Record: Has TAN 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 TAN’s historicals for more clarity.
  3. 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.