How Does Aircastle Limited (NYSE:AYR) Affect Your Portfolio Volatility?

If you own shares in Aircastle Limited (NYSE:AYR) then it’s worth thinking about how it contributes to the volatility of your portfolio, overall. In finance, Beta is a measure of volatility. Modern finance theory considers volatility to be a measure of risk, and there are two main types of price volatility. First, we have company specific volatility, which is the price gyrations of an individual stock. Holding at least 8 stocks can reduce this kind of risk across a portfolio. The second sort is caused by the natural volatility of markets, overall. For example, certain macroeconomic events will impact (virtually) all stocks on the market.

Some stocks are more sensitive to general market forces than others. Beta is a widely used metric to measure a stock’s exposure to market risk (volatility). Before we go on, it’s worth noting that Warren Buffett pointed out in his 2014 letter to shareholders that ‘volatility is far from synonymous with risk.’ Having said that, beta can still be rather useful. The first thing to understand about beta is that the beta of the overall market is one. Any stock with a beta of greater than one is considered more volatile than the market, while those with a beta below one are either less volatile or poorly correlated with the market.

See our latest analysis for Aircastle

What does AYR’s beta value mean to investors?

Looking at the last five years, Aircastle has a beta of 1.59. The fact that this is well above 1 indicates that its share price movements have shown sensitivity to overall market volatility. Based on this history, investors should be aware that Aircastle are likely to rise strongly in times of greed, but sell off in times of fear. Many would argue that beta is useful in position sizing, but fundamental metrics such as revenue and earnings are more important overall. You can see Aircastle’s revenue and earnings in the image below.

NYSE:AYR Income Statement, August 22nd 2019
NYSE:AYR Income Statement, August 22nd 2019

Does AYR’s size influence the expected beta?

With a market capitalisation of US$1.6b, Aircastle is a small cap stock. However, it is big enough to catch the attention of professional investors. It’s not particularly surprising that it has a higher beta than the overall market. That’s because it takes less money to influence the share price of a smaller company, than a bigger company.

What this means for you:

Since Aircastle has a reasonably high beta, it’s worth considering why it is so heavily influenced by broader market sentiment. For example, it might be a high growth stock or have a lot of operating leverage in its business model. In order to fully understand whether AYR is a good investment for you, we also need to consider important company-specific fundamentals such as Aircastle’s financial health and performance track record. I urge you to continue your research by taking a look at the following:

  1. Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for AYR’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for AYR’s outlook.
  2. Past Track Record: Has AYR 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 AYR’s historicals for more clarity.
  3. Other Interesting Stocks: It’s worth checking to see how AYR measures up against other companies on valuation. You could start with this free list of prospective options.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.