Stock Analysis

We're Watching These Trends At Natural Alternatives International (NASDAQ:NAII)

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NasdaqGM:NAII
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Finding a business that has the potential to grow substantially is not easy, but it is possible if we look at a few key financial metrics. Firstly, we'd want to identify a growing return on capital employed (ROCE) and then alongside that, an ever-increasing base of capital employed. Put simply, these types of businesses are compounding machines, meaning they are continually reinvesting their earnings at ever-higher rates of return. Having said that, from a first glance at Natural Alternatives International (NASDAQ:NAII) we aren't jumping out of our chairs at how returns are trending, but let's have a deeper look.

Return On Capital Employed (ROCE): What is it?

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. To calculate this metric for Natural Alternatives International, this is the formula:

Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets - Current Liabilities)

0.024 = US$2.2m ÷ (US$129m - US$37m) (Based on the trailing twelve months to September 2020).

So, Natural Alternatives International has an ROCE of 2.4%. In absolute terms, that's a low return and it also under-performs the Personal Products industry average of 16%.

Check out our latest analysis for Natural Alternatives International

roce
NasdaqGM:NAII Return on Capital Employed December 14th 2020

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 want to delve into the historical earnings, revenue and cash flow of Natural Alternatives International, check out these free graphs here.

What The Trend Of ROCE Can Tell Us

On the surface, the trend of ROCE at Natural Alternatives International doesn't inspire confidence. Around five years ago the returns on capital were 16%, but since then they've fallen to 2.4%. However it looks like Natural Alternatives International 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 may take some time before the company starts to see any change in earnings from these investments.

The Bottom Line On Natural Alternatives International's ROCE

To conclude, we've found that Natural Alternatives International is reinvesting in the business, but returns have been falling. Unsurprisingly, the stock has only gained 17% over the last five years, which potentially indicates that investors are accounting for this going forward. Therefore, if you're looking for a multi-bagger, we'd propose looking at other options.

One final note, you should learn about the 6 warning signs we've spotted with Natural Alternatives International (including 1 which is is potentially serious) .

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.

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What are the risks and opportunities for Natural Alternatives International?

Natural Alternatives International, Inc. engages in formulating, manufacturing, and marketing nutritional supplements in the United States, Europe, Australia, Asia, Mexico, and Canada.

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Rewards

  • Price-To-Earnings ratio (6.2x) is below the US market (15.3x)

Risks

  • Does not have a meaningful market cap ($53M)

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Natural Alternatives International

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