New Concept Energy Inc (AMEX:GBR) trades with a trailing P/E of 8x, which is lower than the industry average of 12.2x. Although some investors may jump to the conclusion that this is a great buying opportunity, understanding the assumptions behind the P/E ratio might change your mind. Today, I will explain what the P/E ratio is as well as what you should look out for when using it. See our latest analysis for New Concept Energy
What you need to know about the P/E ratio
P/E is often used for relative valuation since earnings power is a chief driver of investment value. It compares a stock’s price per share to the stock’s earnings per share. A more intuitive way of understanding the P/E ratio is to think of it as how much investors are paying for each dollar of the company’s earnings.
Price-Earnings Ratio = Price per share ÷ Earnings per share
P/E Calculation for GBR
Price per share = $1.39
Earnings per share = $0.174
∴ Price-Earnings Ratio = $1.39 ÷ $0.174 = 8x
On its own, the P/E ratio doesn’t tell you much; however, it becomes extremely useful when you compare it with other similar companies. Ultimately, our goal is to compare the stock’s P/E ratio to the average of companies that have similar attributes to GBR, such as company lifetime and products sold. A common peer group is companies that exist in the same industry, which is what I use below. Since similar companies should technically have similar P/E ratios, we can very quickly come to some conclusions about the stock if the ratios differ.
Since GBR’s P/E of 8x is lower than its industry peers (12.2x), it means that investors are paying less than they should for each dollar of GBR’s earnings. Therefore, according to this analysis, GBR is an under-priced stock.
Assumptions to be aware of
However, before you rush out to buy GBR, it is important to note that this conclusion is based on two key assumptions. The first is that our peer group actually contains companies that are similar to GBR. If this isn’t the case, the difference in P/E could be due to some other factors. For example, if you accidentally compared higher growth firms with GBR, then GBR’s P/E would naturally be lower since investors would reward its peers’ higher growth with a higher price. Alternatively, if you inadvertently compared less risky firms with GBR, GBR’s P/E would again be lower since investors would reward its peers’ lower risk with a higher price as well. The second assumption that must hold true is that the stocks we are comparing GBR to are fairly valued by the market. If this assumption does not hold true, GBR’s lower P/E ratio may be because firms in our peer group are being overvalued by the market.
What this means for you:
If your personal research into the stock confirms what the P/E ratio is telling you, it might be a good time to add more of GBR to your portfolio. But keep in mind that the usefulness of relative valuation depends on whether you are comfortable with making the assumptions I mentioned above. Remember that basing your investment decision off one metric alone is certainly not sufficient. There are many things I have not taken into account in this article and the PE ratio is very one-dimensional. If you have not done so already, I highly recommend you to complete your research by taking a look at the following:
- Financial Health: Is GBR’s operations financially sustainable? Balance sheets can be hard to analyze, which is why we’ve done it for you. Check out our financial health checks here.
- Past Track Record: Has GBR 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 GBR’s historicals for more clarity.
- Other High-Performing Stocks: Are there other stocks that provide better prospects with proven track records? Explore our free list of these great stocks here.