Columbia Sportswear (NASDAQ:COLM) has had a great run on the share market with its stock up by a significant 21% over the last three months. Given the company's impressive performance, we decided to study its financial indicators more closely as a company's financial health over the long-term usually dictates market outcomes. Specifically, we decided to study Columbia Sportswear's ROE in this article.
Return on Equity or ROE is a test of how effectively a company is growing its value and managing investors’ money. In other words, it is a profitability ratio which measures the rate of return on the capital provided by the company's shareholders.
How Is ROE Calculated?
Return on equity can be calculated by using the formula:
Return on Equity = Net Profit (from continuing operations) ÷ Shareholders' Equity
So, based on the above formula, the ROE for Columbia Sportswear is:
11% = US$183m ÷ US$1.7b (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2020).
The 'return' refers to a company's earnings over the last year. One way to conceptualize this is that for each $1 of shareholders' capital it has, the company made $0.11 in profit.
What Has ROE Got To Do With 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. Assuming all else is equal, companies that have both a higher return on equity and higher profit retention are usually the ones that have a higher growth rate when compared to companies that don't have the same features.
Columbia Sportswear's Earnings Growth And 11% ROE
At first glance, Columbia Sportswear seems to have a decent ROE. Further, the company's ROE is similar to the industry average of 10%. This probably goes some way in explaining Columbia Sportswear's moderate 13% growth over the past five years amongst other factors.
Given that the industry shrunk its earnings at a rate of 0.1% in the same period, the net income growth of the company is quite impressive.
Earnings growth is an important metric to consider when valuing a stock. It’s important for an investor to know whether the market has priced in the company's expected earnings growth (or decline). This then helps them determine if the stock is placed for a bright or bleak future. What is COLM worth today? The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether COLM is currently mispriced by the market.
Is Columbia Sportswear Using Its Retained Earnings Effectively?
While the company did pay out a portion of its dividend in the past, it currently doesn't pay a dividend. We infer that the company has been reinvesting all of its profits to grow its business.
Upon studying the latest analysts' consensus data, we found that the company is expected to keep paying out approximately 24% of its profits over the next three years. However, Columbia Sportswear's ROE is predicted to rise to 16% despite there being no anticipated change in its payout ratio.
In total, we are pretty happy with Columbia Sportswear's performance. Specifically, we like that the company is reinvesting a huge chunk of its profits at a high rate of return. This of course has caused the company to see substantial 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. 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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