With its stock down 10% over the past three months, it is easy to disregard B&S Group (AMS:BSGR). 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. In this article, we decided to focus on B&S Group's ROE.
Return on Equity or ROE is a test of how effectively a company is growing its value and managing investors’ money. In simpler terms, it measures the profitability of a company in relation to shareholder's equity.
How Is ROE Calculated?
The formula for ROE is:
Return on Equity = Net Profit (from continuing operations) ÷ Shareholders' Equity
So, based on the above formula, the ROE for B&S Group is:
18% = €55m ÷ €303m (Based on the trailing twelve months to December 2021).
The 'return' is the amount earned after tax over the last twelve months. That means that for every €1 worth of shareholders' equity, the company generated €0.18 in profit.
What Is The Relationship Between ROE And 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. Assuming all else is equal, companies that have both a higher return on equity and higher profit retention are usually the ones that have a higher growth rate when compared to companies that don't have the same features.
A Side By Side comparison of B&S Group's Earnings Growth And 18% ROE
To begin with, B&S Group seems to have a respectable ROE. And on comparing with the industry, we found that the the average industry ROE is similar at 17%. However, while B&S Group has a pretty respectable ROE, its five year net income decline rate was 21% . So, there might be some other aspects that could explain this. For example, it could be that the company has a high payout ratio or the business has allocated capital poorly, for instance.
However, when we compared B&S Group's growth with the industry we found that while the company's earnings have been shrinking, the industry has seen an earnings growth of 10.0% in the same period. This is quite worrisome.
Earnings growth is a huge factor in stock valuation. The investor should try to establish if the expected growth or decline in earnings, whichever the case may be, is priced in. By doing so, they will have an idea if the stock is headed into clear blue waters or if swampy waters await. One good indicator of expected earnings growth is the P/E ratio which determines the price the market is willing to pay for a stock based on its earnings prospects. So, you may want to check if B&S Group is trading on a high P/E or a low P/E, relative to its industry.
Is B&S Group Using Its Retained Earnings Effectively?
In spite of a normal three-year median payout ratio of 33% (that is, a retention ratio of 67%), the fact that B&S Group's earnings have shrunk is quite puzzling. It looks like there might be some other reasons to explain the lack in that respect. For example, the business could be in decline.
In addition, B&S Group has been paying dividends over a period of four years suggesting that keeping up dividend payments is preferred by the management even though earnings have been in decline. Upon studying the latest analysts' consensus data, we found that the company's future payout ratio is expected to rise to 41% over the next three years. However, the company's ROE is not expected to change by much despite the higher expected payout ratio.
In total, it does look like B&S Group has some positive aspects to its business. 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. Having said that, looking at current analyst estimates, we found that the company's earnings growth rate is expected to see a huge improvement. To know more about the latest analysts predictions for the company, check out this visualization of analyst forecasts for the company.
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.