Does Consun Pharmaceutical Group Limited (HKG:1681) Have A Good P/E Ratio?

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This article is for investors who would like to improve their understanding of price to earnings ratios (P/E ratios). To keep it practical, we’ll show how Consun Pharmaceutical Group Limited’s (HKG:1681) P/E ratio could help you assess the value on offer. What is Consun Pharmaceutical Group’s P/E ratio? Well, based on the last twelve months it is 7.92. That corresponds to an earnings yield of approximately 13%.

See our latest analysis for Consun Pharmaceutical Group

How Do I Calculate A Price To Earnings Ratio?

The formula for price to earnings is:

Price to Earnings Ratio = Share Price (in reporting currency) ÷ Earnings per Share (EPS)

Or for Consun Pharmaceutical Group:

P/E of 7.92 = CN¥4.31 (Note: this is the share price in the reporting currency, namely, CNY ) ÷ CN¥0.54 (Based on the trailing twelve months to December 2018.)

Is A High Price-to-Earnings Ratio Good?

A higher P/E ratio means that buyers have to pay a higher price for each HK$1 the company has earned over the last year. All else being equal, it’s better to pay a low price — but as Warren Buffett said, ‘It’s far better to buy a wonderful company at a fair price than a fair company at a wonderful price.’

How Does Consun Pharmaceutical Group’s P/E Ratio Compare To Its Peers?

We can get an indication of market expectations by looking at the P/E ratio. We can see in the image below that the average P/E (12.4) for companies in the pharmaceuticals industry is higher than Consun Pharmaceutical Group’s P/E.

SEHK:1681 Price Estimation Relative to Market, July 12th 2019
SEHK:1681 Price Estimation Relative to Market, July 12th 2019

Consun Pharmaceutical Group’s P/E tells us that market participants think it will not fare as well as its peers in the same industry.

How Growth Rates Impact P/E Ratios

P/E ratios primarily reflect market expectations around earnings growth rates. If earnings are growing quickly, then the ‘E’ in the equation will increase faster than it would otherwise. And in that case, the P/E ratio itself will drop rather quickly. So while a stock may look expensive based on past earnings, it could be cheap based on future earnings.

Most would be impressed by Consun Pharmaceutical Group earnings growth of 18% in the last year. And its annual EPS growth rate over 5 years is 22%. So one might expect an above average P/E ratio.

Don’t Forget: The P/E Does Not Account For Debt or Bank Deposits

Don’t forget that the P/E ratio considers market capitalization. Thus, the metric does not reflect cash or debt held by the company. In theory, a company can lower its future P/E ratio by using cash or debt to invest in growth.

Such expenditure might be good or bad, in the long term, but the point here is that the balance sheet is not reflected by this ratio.

Consun Pharmaceutical Group’s Balance Sheet

Consun Pharmaceutical Group has net cash of CN¥877m. This is fairly high at 24% of its market capitalization. That might mean balance sheet strength is important to the business, but should also help push the P/E a bit higher than it would otherwise be.

The Bottom Line On Consun Pharmaceutical Group’s P/E Ratio

Consun Pharmaceutical Group has a P/E of 7.9. That’s below the average in the HK market, which is 10.8. The net cash position gives plenty of options to the business, and the recent improvement in EPS is good to see. The below average P/E ratio suggests that market participants don’t believe the strong growth will continue. Given analysts are expecting further growth, one I would have expected a higher P/E ratio. So this stock may well be worth further research.

Investors have an opportunity when market expectations about a stock are wrong. If the reality for a company is not as bad as the P/E ratio indicates, then the share price should increase as the market realizes this. So this free visualization of the analyst consensus on future earnings could help you make the right decision about whether to buy, sell, or hold.

Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking at a few good candidates. So take a peek at this free list of companies with modest (or no) debt, trading on a P/E below 20.

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.