Stock Analysis

Returns On Capital At Yanbu National Petrochemical (TADAWUL:2290) Paint A Concerning Picture

SASE:2290
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What financial metrics can indicate to us that a company is maturing or even in decline? Businesses in decline often have two underlying trends, firstly, a declining return on capital employed (ROCE) and a declining base of capital employed. This indicates to us that the business is not only shrinking the size of its net assets, but its returns are falling as well. So after we looked into Yanbu National Petrochemical (TADAWUL:2290), the trends above didn't look too great.

What is Return On Capital Employed (ROCE)?

For those who don't know, ROCE is a measure of a company's yearly pre-tax profit (its return), relative to the capital employed in the business. The formula for this calculation on Yanbu National Petrochemical is:

Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets - Current Liabilities)

0.10 = ر.س1.6b ÷ (ر.س17b - ر.س1.4b) (Based on the trailing twelve months to September 2021).

Therefore, Yanbu National Petrochemical has an ROCE of 10%. That's a pretty standard return and it's in line with the industry average of 10%.

See our latest analysis for Yanbu National Petrochemical

roce
SASE:2290 Return on Capital Employed October 26th 2021

In the above chart we have measured Yanbu National Petrochemical's prior ROCE against its prior performance, but the future is arguably more important. If you'd like to see what analysts are forecasting going forward, you should check out our free report for Yanbu National Petrochemical.

What Can We Tell From Yanbu National Petrochemical's ROCE Trend?

In terms of Yanbu National Petrochemical's historical ROCE movements, the trend doesn't inspire confidence. About five years ago, returns on capital were 13%, however they're now substantially lower than that as we saw above. On top of that, it's worth noting that the amount of capital employed within the business has remained relatively steady. This combination can be indicative of a mature business that still has areas to deploy capital, but the returns received aren't as high due potentially to new competition or smaller margins. If these trends continue, we wouldn't expect Yanbu National Petrochemical to turn into a multi-bagger.

The Key Takeaway

All in all, the lower returns from the same amount of capital employed aren't exactly signs of a compounding machine. Yet despite these poor fundamentals, the stock has gained a huge 121% over the last five years, so investors appear very optimistic. In any case, the current underlying trends don't bode well for long term performance so unless they reverse, we'd start looking elsewhere.

Yanbu National Petrochemical does have some risks though, and we've spotted 1 warning sign for Yanbu National Petrochemical that you might be interested in.

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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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