It is hard to get excited after looking at HEICO's (NYSE:HEI) recent performance, when its stock has declined 8.6% over the past three months. However, stock prices are usually driven by a company’s financial performance over the long term, which in this case looks quite promising. Particularly, we will be paying attention to HEICO's ROE today.
ROE or return on equity is a useful tool to assess how effectively a company can generate returns on the investment it received from its shareholders. Put another way, it reveals the company's success at turning shareholder investments into profits.
How Is ROE Calculated?
The formula for return on equity is:
Return on Equity = Net Profit (from continuing operations) ÷ Shareholders' Equity
So, based on the above formula, the ROE for HEICO is:
13% = US$441m ÷ US$3.3b (Based on the trailing twelve months to July 2023).
The 'return' is the yearly profit. One way to conceptualize this is that for each $1 of shareholders' capital it has, the company made $0.13 in profit.
Why Is ROE Important For Earnings Growth?
So far, we've learned that ROE is a measure of a company's profitability. Based on how much of its profits the company chooses to reinvest or "retain", we are then able to evaluate a company's future ability to generate profits. Generally speaking, other things being equal, firms with a high return on equity and profit retention, have a higher growth rate than firms that don’t share these attributes.
HEICO's Earnings Growth And 13% ROE
At first glance, HEICO seems to have a decent ROE. And on comparing with the industry, we found that the the average industry ROE is similar at 12%. This certainly adds some context to HEICO's moderate 5.4% net income growth seen over the past five years.
We then performed a comparison between HEICO's net income growth with the industry, which revealed that the company's growth is similar to the average industry growth of 5.8% in the same 5-year period.
Earnings growth is an important metric to consider when valuing a stock. What investors need to determine next is if the expected earnings growth, or the lack of it, is already built into the share price. This then helps them determine if the stock is placed for a bright or bleak future. 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 HEICO is trading on a high P/E or a low P/E, relative to its industry.
Is HEICO Making Efficient Use Of Its Profits?
In HEICO's case, its respectable earnings growth can probably be explained by its low three-year median payout ratio of 7.2% (or a retention ratio of 93%), which suggests that the company is investing most of its profits to grow its business.
Moreover, HEICO is determined to keep sharing its profits with shareholders which we infer from its long history of paying a dividend for at least ten years. Existing analyst estimates suggest that the company's future payout ratio is expected to drop to 5.1% over the next three years.
Overall, we are quite pleased with HEICO's performance. In particular, it's great to see that the company is investing heavily into its business and along with a high rate of return, that has resulted in a sizeable growth in its earnings. That being so, the latest analyst forecasts show that the company will continue to see an expansion in its earnings. To know more about the latest analysts predictions for the company, check out this visualization of analyst forecasts for the company.
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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.