How Does Pacific Edge Limited (NZE:PEB) Affect Your Portfolio Returns?

By
Simply Wall St
Published
April 22, 2018
NZSE:PEB
Source: Shutterstock

For Pacific Edge Limited’s (NZSE:PEB) shareholders, and also potential investors in the stock, understanding how the stock’s risk and return characteristics can impact your portfolio is important. Generally, an investor should consider two types of risk that impact the market value of PEB. The first type is company-specific risk, which can be diversified away by investing in other companies to reduce exposure to one particular stock. The second type is market risk, one that you cannot diversify away, since it arises from macroeconomic factors which directly affects all the stocks in the market.

Not all stocks are expose to the same level of market risk. A popular measure of market risk for a stock is its beta, and the market as a whole represents a beta value of one. A stock with a beta greater than one is considered more sensitive to market-wide shocks compared to a stock that trades below the value of one.

View our latest analysis for Pacific Edge

What is PEB’s market risk?

Pacific Edge's beta of 0.79 indicates that the stock value will be less variable compared to the whole stock market. The stock will exhibit muted movements in both the downside and upside, in response to changing economic conditions, whereas the general market may move by a lot more. PEB's beta implies it may be a stock that investors with high-beta portfolios might find relevant if they wanted to reduce their exposure to market risk, especially during times of downturns.

NZSE:PEB Income Statement Apr 22nd 18
NZSE:PEB Income Statement Apr 22nd 18

How does PEB's size and industry impact its risk?

A market capitalisation of NZ$158.55M puts PEB in the category of small-cap stocks, which tends to possess higher beta than larger companies. Conversely, the company operates in the biotechs industry, which has been found to have low sensitivity to market-wide shocks. Therefore, investors can expect a high beta associated with the size of PEB, but a lower beta given the nature of the industry it operates in. This is an interesting conclusion, since its size suggests PEB should be more volatile than it actually is. A potential driver of this variance can be a fundamental factor, which we will take a look at next.

Can PEB's asset-composition point to a higher beta?

An asset-heavy company tends to have a higher beta because the risk associated with running fixed assets during a downturn is highly expensive. I test PEB’s ratio of fixed assets to total assets in order to determine how high the risk is associated with this type of constraint. Considering fixed assets account for less than a third of the company's overall assets, PEB seems to have a smaller dependency on fixed costs to generate revenue. Thus, we can expect PEB to be more stable in the face of market movements, relative to its peers of similar size but with a higher portion of fixed assets on their books. This is consistent with is current beta value which also indicates low volatility.

What this means for you:

You could benefit from lower risk during times of economic decline by holding onto PEB. Its low fixed cost also means that, in terms of operating leverage, it is relatively flexible during times of economic downturns. In order to fully understand whether PEB is a good investment for you, we also need to consider important company-specific fundamentals such as Pacific Edge’s financial health and performance track record. I highly recommend you to complete your research by taking a look at the following:

  1. Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for PEB’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for PEB’s outlook.
  2. Past Track Record: Has PEB been consistently performing well irrespective of the ups and downs in the market? Go into more detail in the past performance analysis and take a look at the free visual representations of PEB's historicals for more clarity.
  3. Other High-Performing Stocks: Are there other stocks that provide better prospects with proven track records? Explore our free list of these great stocks here.

Simply Wall St analyst Simply Wall St and Simply Wall St have no position in any of the companies mentioned. This article 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.

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