Why You Should Care About Republic Services, Inc.’s (NYSE:RSG) Cash Levels

If you are currently a shareholder in Republic Services, Inc. (NYSE:RSG), or considering investing in the stock, you need to examine how the business generates cash, and how it is reinvested. After investment, what’s left over is what belongs to you, the investor. This also determines how much the stock is worth. I’ve analysed below, the health and outlook of Republic Services’s cash flow, which will help you understand the stock from a cash standpoint. Cash is an important concept to grasp as an investor, as it directly impacts the value of your shares and the future growth potential of your portfolio.

Check out our latest analysis for Republic Services

Is Republic Services generating enough cash?

Republic Services’s free cash flow (FCF) is the level of cash flow the business generates from its operational activities, after it reinvests in the company as capital expenditure. This type of expense is needed for Republic Services to continue to grow, or at least, maintain its current operations.

There are two methods I will use to evaluate the quality of Republic Services’s FCF: firstly, I will measure its FCF yield relative to the market index yield; secondly, I will examine whether its operating cash flow will continue to grow into the future, which will give us a sense of sustainability.

Free Cash Flow = Operating Cash Flows – Net Capital Expenditure

Free Cash Flow Yield = Free Cash Flow / Enterprise Value

where Enterprise Value = Market Capitalisation + Net Debt

Republic Services’s yield of 3.65% indicates its sub-standard capacity to generate cash, compared to the stock market index as a whole, accounting for the size differential. This means investors are taking on more concentrated risk on Republic Services but are not being adequately rewarded for doing so.

NYSE:RSG Balance Sheet Net Worth, March 8th 2019
NYSE:RSG Balance Sheet Net Worth, March 8th 2019

Does Republic Services have a favourable cash flow trend?

Does Republic Services’s future look brighter in terms of its ability to generate higher operating cash flows? This can be estimated by examining the trend of the company’s operating cash flow moving forward. In the next few years, Republic Services’s operating cash flows is expected to grow by 9.2%, which is encouraging, should capital expenditure levels maintain at an appropriate level. Below is a table of Republic Services’s operating cash flow in the past year, as well as the anticipated level going forward.
Current +1 year +2 year
Operating Cash Flow (OCF) US$2.2b US$2.4b US$2.4b
OCF Growth Year-On-Year 5.0% 4.0%
OCF Growth From Current Year 9.2%

Next Steps:

Although its positive operating cash flow, and high future growth, is appealing, the low free cash flow yield is unattractive. This is because you would be better compensated in terms of cash yield, by investing in the market index, as well as take on lower diversification risk. However, cash is only one aspect of investing. Keep in mind that cash is only one aspect of investment analysis and there are other important fundamentals to assess. You should continue to research Republic Services to get a better picture of the company by looking at:

  1. Valuation: What is RSG 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 RSG is currently mispriced by the market.
  2. Management Team: An experienced management team on the helm increases our confidence in the business – take a look at who sits on Republic Services’s board and the CEO’s back ground.
  3. Other High-Performing Stocks: If you believe you should cushion your portfolio with something less risky, scroll through our free list of these great stocks here.

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.