With an ROE of 6.43%, Magseis ASA (OB:MSEIS) returned in-line to its own industry which delivered 6.34% over the past year. However, whether this ROE is actually impressive depends on if it can be maintained. This can be measured by looking at the company’s financial leverage. With more debt, MSEIS can invest even more and earn more money, thus pushing up its returns. However, ROE only measures returns against equity, not debt. This can be distorted, so let’s take a look at it further. View our latest analysis for Magseis
What you must know about ROE
Return on Equity (ROE) weighs Magseis’s profit against the level of its shareholders’ equity. It essentially shows how much the company can generate in earnings given the amount of equity it has raised. If investors diversify their portfolio by industry, they may want to maximise their return in the Oil and Gas Equipment and Services sector by investing in the highest returning stock. However, this can be deceiving as each company has varying costs of equity and debt levels, which could exaggeratedly push up ROE at the same time as accumulating high interest expense.
Return on Equity = Net Profit ÷ Shareholders Equity
ROE is assessed against cost of equity, which is measured using the Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM) – but let’s not dive into the details of that today. For now, let’s just look at the cost of equity number for Magseis, which is 9.19%. Given a discrepancy of -2.77% between return and cost, this indicated that Magseis may be paying more for its capital than what it’s generating in return. ROE can be dissected into three distinct ratios: net profit margin, asset turnover, and financial leverage. This is called the Dupont Formula:
ROE = profit margin × asset turnover × financial leverage
ROE = (annual net profit ÷ sales) × (sales ÷ assets) × (assets ÷ shareholders’ equity)
ROE = annual net profit ÷ shareholders’ equity
Basically, profit margin measures how much of revenue trickles down into earnings which illustrates how efficient the business is with its cost management. Asset turnover reveals how much revenue can be generated from Magseis’s asset base. And finally, financial leverage is simply how much of assets are funded by equity, which exhibits how sustainable the company’s capital structure is. We can determine if Magseis’s ROE is inflated by borrowing high levels of debt. Generally, a balanced capital structure means its returns will be sustainable over the long run. We can examine this by looking at Magseis’s debt-to-equity ratio. The ratio currently stands at a sensible 11.48%, meaning Magseis has not taken on excessive debt to drive its returns. The company is able to produce profit growth without a huge debt burden.
ROE is a simple yet informative ratio, illustrating the various components that each measure the quality of the overall stock. Magseis’s ROE is impressive relative to the industry average, though its returns were not strong enough to cover its own cost of equity. Its high ROE is not likely to be driven by high debt. Therefore, investors may have more confidence in the sustainability of this level of returns going forward. Although ROE can be a useful metric, it is only a small part of diligent research.
For Magseis, I’ve compiled three relevant aspects you should further research:
- Financial Health: Does it have a healthy balance sheet? Take a look at our free balance sheet analysis with six simple checks on key factors like leverage and risk.
- Valuation: What is Magseis worth today? Is the stock undervalued, even when its growth outlook is factored into its intrinsic value? The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether Magseis is currently mispriced by the market.
- Other High-Growth Alternatives : Are there other high-growth stocks you could be holding instead of Magseis? Explore our interactive list of stocks with large growth potential to get an idea of what else is out there you may be missing!