Declining Stock and Decent Financials: Is The Market Wrong About Neogen Corporation (NASDAQ:NEOG)?

By
Simply Wall St
Published
February 20, 2022
NasdaqGS:NEOG
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It is hard to get excited after looking at Neogen's (NASDAQ:NEOG) recent performance, when its stock has declined 20% over the past three months. But if you pay close attention, you might find that its key financial indicators look quite decent, which could mean that the stock could potentially rise in the long-term given how markets usually reward more resilient long-term fundamentals. In this article, we decided to focus on Neogen's ROE.

Return on equity or ROE is an important factor to be considered by a shareholder because it tells them how effectively their capital is being reinvested. In simpler terms, it measures the profitability of a company in relation to shareholder's equity.

See our latest analysis for Neogen

How Is ROE Calculated?

ROE 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 Neogen is:

6.6% = US$57m ÷ US$865m (Based on the trailing twelve months to November 2021).

The 'return' refers to a company's earnings over the last year. That means that for every $1 worth of shareholders' equity, the company generated $0.07 in profit.

Why Is ROE Important For Earnings Growth?

We have already established that ROE serves as an efficient profit-generating gauge for a company's future earnings. We now need to evaluate how much profit the company reinvests or "retains" for future growth which then gives us an idea about the growth potential of the company. 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.

A Side By Side comparison of Neogen's Earnings Growth And 6.6% ROE

When you first look at it, Neogen's ROE doesn't look that attractive. Next, when compared to the average industry ROE of 9.7%, the company's ROE leaves us feeling even less enthusiastic. However, the moderate 5.7% net income growth seen by Neogen over the past five years is definitely a positive. We reckon that there could be other factors at play here. For instance, the company has a low payout ratio or is being managed efficiently.

We then compared Neogen's net income growth with the industry and found that the company's growth figure is lower than the average industry growth rate of 13% in the same period, which is a bit concerning.

past-earnings-growth
NasdaqGS:NEOG Past Earnings Growth February 20th 2022

Earnings growth is a huge factor in stock valuation. The investor should try to establish if the expected growth or decline in earnings, whichever the case may be, is priced in. This then helps them determine if the stock is placed for a bright or bleak future. Is Neogen fairly valued compared to other companies? These 3 valuation measures might help you decide.

Is Neogen Making Efficient Use Of Its Profits?

Neogen doesn't pay any dividend, meaning that all of its profits are being reinvested in the business, which explains the fair bit of earnings growth the company has seen.

Summary

Overall, we feel that Neogen certainly does have some positive factors to consider. Namely, its respectable earnings growth, which it achieved due to it retaining most of its profits. However, given the low ROE, investors may not be benefitting from all that reinvestment after all. While we won't completely dismiss the company, what we would do, is try to ascertain how risky the business is to make a more informed decision around the company. Our risks dashboard will have the 1 risk we have identified for Neogen.

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