Statutory Profit Doesn't Reflect How Good MSP Steel & Power's (NSE:MSPL) Earnings Are

By
Simply Wall St
Published
November 23, 2021
NSEI:MSPL
Source: Shutterstock

The subdued stock price reaction suggests that MSP Steel & Power Limited's (NSE:MSPL) strong earnings didn't offer any surprises. We think that investors have missed some encouraging factors underlying the profit figures.

Check out our latest analysis for MSP Steel & Power

earnings-and-revenue-history
NSEI:MSPL Earnings and Revenue History November 24th 2021

A Closer Look At MSP Steel & Power's Earnings

One key financial ratio used to measure how well a company converts its profit to free cash flow (FCF) is the accrual ratio. In plain english, this ratio subtracts FCF from net profit, and divides that number by the company's average operating assets over that period. You could think of the accrual ratio from cashflow as the 'non-FCF profit ratio'.

That means a negative accrual ratio is a good thing, because it shows that the company is bringing in more free cash flow than its profit would suggest. That is not intended to imply we should worry about a positive accrual ratio, but it's worth noting where the accrual ratio is rather high. Notably, there is some academic evidence that suggests that a high accrual ratio is a bad sign for near-term profits, generally speaking.

MSP Steel & Power has an accrual ratio of -0.14 for the year to September 2021. That indicates that its free cash flow was a fair bit more than its statutory profit. In fact, it had free cash flow of ₹2.2b in the last year, which was a lot more than its statutory profit of ₹315.2m. MSP Steel & Power shareholders are no doubt pleased that free cash flow improved over the last twelve months.

Note: we always recommend investors check balance sheet strength. Click here to be taken to our balance sheet analysis of MSP Steel & Power.

Our Take On MSP Steel & Power's Profit Performance

MSP Steel & Power's accrual ratio is solid, and indicates strong free cash flow, as we discussed, above. Based on this observation, we consider it likely that MSP Steel & Power's statutory profit actually understates its earnings potential! And it's also positive that the company showed enough improvement to book a profit this year, after losing money last year. Of course, we've only just scratched the surface when it comes to analysing its earnings; one could also consider margins, forecast growth, and return on investment, among other factors. In light of this, if you'd like to do more analysis on the company, it's vital to be informed of the risks involved. For example, MSP Steel & Power has 2 warning signs (and 1 which is potentially serious) we think you should know about.

This note has only looked at a single factor that sheds light on the nature of MSP Steel & Power's profit. But there is always more to discover if you are capable of focussing your mind on minutiae. For example, many people consider a high return on equity as an indication of favorable business economics, while others like to 'follow the money' and search out stocks that insiders are buying. So you may wish to see this free collection of companies boasting high return on equity, or this list of stocks that insiders are buying.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.

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Simply Wall St

Simply Wall St is focused on providing unbiased, high-quality research coverage on every listed company in the world. Our research team consists of data scientists and multiple equity analysts with over two decades worth of financial markets experience between them.