Stock Analysis

Investors Met With Slowing Returns on Capital At Pujiang International Group (HKG:2060)

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Did you know there are some financial metrics that can provide clues of a potential multi-bagger? Ideally, a business will show two trends; firstly a growing return on capital employed (ROCE) and secondly, an increasing amount of capital employed. Put simply, these types of businesses are compounding machines, meaning they are continually reinvesting their earnings at ever-higher rates of return. With that in mind, the ROCE of Pujiang International Group (HKG:2060) looks decent, right now, so lets see what the trend of returns can tell us.

Understanding Return On Capital Employed (ROCE)

Just to clarify if you're unsure, ROCE is a metric for evaluating how much pre-tax income (in percentage terms) a company earns on the capital invested in its business. To calculate this metric for Pujiang International Group, this is the formula:

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

0.13 = CN¥319m ÷ (CN¥5.8b - CN¥3.2b) (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2022).

Therefore, Pujiang International Group has an ROCE of 13%. In absolute terms, that's a satisfactory return, but compared to the Machinery industry average of 7.0% it's much better.

Check out our latest analysis for Pujiang International Group

SEHK:2060 Return on Capital Employed March 16th 2023

While the past is not representative of the future, it can be helpful to know how a company has performed historically, which is why we have this chart above. If you'd like to look at how Pujiang International Group has performed in the past in other metrics, you can view this free graph of past earnings, revenue and cash flow.

So How Is Pujiang International Group's ROCE Trending?

The trend of ROCE doesn't stand out much, but returns on a whole are decent. The company has consistently earned 13% for the last five years, and the capital employed within the business has risen 129% in that time. 13% is a pretty standard return, and it provides some comfort knowing that Pujiang International Group has consistently earned this amount. Over long periods of time, returns like these might not be too exciting, but with consistency they can pay off in terms of share price returns.

On another note, while the change in ROCE trend might not scream for attention, it's interesting that the current liabilities have actually gone up over the last five years. This is intriguing because if current liabilities hadn't increased to 56% of total assets, this reported ROCE would probably be less than13% because total capital employed would be higher.The 13% ROCE could be even lower if current liabilities weren't 56% of total assets, because the the formula would show a larger base of total capital employed. Additionally, this high level of current liabilities isn't ideal because it means the company's suppliers (or short-term creditors) are effectively funding a large portion of the business.

The Bottom Line

The main thing to remember is that Pujiang International Group has proven its ability to continually reinvest at respectable rates of return. What's surprising though is that the stock has collapsed 87% over the last three years, so there might be other areas of the business hurting its prospects. So in light of that'd we think it's worthwhile looking further into this stock to see if there's any areas for concern.

On a final note, we found 3 warning signs for Pujiang International Group (2 don't sit too well with us) you should be aware of.

If you want to search for solid companies with great earnings, check out this free list of companies with good balance sheets and impressive returns on equity.

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