If you're looking for a multi-bagger, there's a few things to keep an eye out for. In a perfect world, we'd like to see a company investing more capital into its business and ideally the returns earned from that capital are also increasing. Ultimately, this demonstrates that it's a business that is reinvesting profits at increasing rates of return. Having said that, from a first glance at Utah Medical Products (NASDAQ:UTMD) we aren't jumping out of our chairs at how returns are trending, but let's have a deeper look.
Understanding Return On Capital Employed (ROCE)
Just to clarify if you're unsure, ROCE is a metric for evaluating how much pre-tax income (in percentage terms) a company earns on the capital invested in its business. Analysts use this formula to calculate it for Utah Medical Products:
Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets - Current Liabilities)
0.15 = US$17m ÷ (US$117m - US$4.4m) (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2021).
Thus, Utah Medical Products has an ROCE of 15%. In absolute terms, that's a satisfactory return, but compared to the Medical Equipment industry average of 8.7% it's much better.
While the past is not representative of the future, it can be helpful to know how a company has performed historically, which is why we have this chart above. If you'd like to look at how Utah Medical Products has performed in the past in other metrics, you can view this free graph of past earnings, revenue and cash flow.
What Does the ROCE Trend For Utah Medical Products Tell Us?
In terms of Utah Medical Products' historical ROCE movements, the trend isn't fantastic. Over the last five years, returns on capital have decreased to 15% from 22% five years ago. However it looks like Utah Medical Products might be reinvesting for long term growth because while capital employed has increased, the company's sales haven't changed much in the last 12 months. It's worth keeping an eye on the company's earnings from here on to see if these investments do end up contributing to the bottom line.
What We Can Learn From Utah Medical Products' ROCE
In summary, Utah Medical Products is reinvesting funds back into the business for growth but unfortunately it looks like sales haven't increased much just yet. Since the stock has gained an impressive 73% over the last five years, investors must think there's better things to come. Ultimately, if the underlying trends persist, we wouldn't hold our breath on it being a multi-bagger going forward.
Utah Medical Products does have some risks though, and we've spotted 1 warning sign for Utah Medical Products that you might be interested in.
For those who like to invest in solid companies, check out this free list of companies with solid balance sheets and high returns on equity.
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.
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