Stock Analysis

Returns On Capital Signal Tricky Times Ahead For Nu Skin Enterprises (NYSE:NUS)

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NYSE:NUS
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If you're not sure where to start when looking for the next multi-bagger, there are a few key trends you should keep an eye out for. Amongst other things, we'll want to see two things; firstly, a growing return on capital employed (ROCE) and secondly, an expansion in the company's amount 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 Nu Skin Enterprises (NYSE:NUS) we aren't jumping out of our chairs at how returns are trending, but let's have a deeper look.

What Is Return On Capital Employed (ROCE)?

For those who don't know, ROCE is a measure of a company's yearly pre-tax profit (its return), relative to the capital employed in the business. The formula for this calculation on Nu Skin Enterprises is:

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

0.16 = US$248m ÷ (US$1.9b - US$384m) (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2022).

Therefore, Nu Skin Enterprises has an ROCE of 16%. In absolute terms, that's a pretty normal return, and it's somewhat close to the Personal Products industry average of 17%.

Check out our latest analysis for Nu Skin Enterprises

roce
NYSE:NUS Return on Capital Employed September 27th 2022

In the above chart we have measured Nu Skin Enterprises' prior ROCE against its prior performance, but the future is arguably more important. If you'd like, you can check out the forecasts from the analysts covering Nu Skin Enterprises here for free.

So How Is Nu Skin Enterprises' ROCE Trending?

When we looked at the ROCE trend at Nu Skin Enterprises, we didn't gain much confidence. Around five years ago the returns on capital were 23%, but since then they've fallen to 16%. And considering revenue has dropped while employing more capital, we'd be cautious. This could mean that the business is losing its competitive advantage or market share, because while more money is being put into ventures, it's actually producing a lower return - "less bang for their buck" per se.

The Bottom Line

In summary, we're somewhat concerned by Nu Skin Enterprises' diminishing returns on increasing amounts of capital. It should come as no surprise then that the stock has fallen 31% over the last five years, so it looks like investors are recognizing these changes. That being the case, unless the underlying trends revert to a more positive trajectory, we'd consider looking elsewhere.

On a separate note, we've found 2 warning signs for Nu Skin Enterprises you'll probably want to know about.

While Nu Skin Enterprises may not currently earn the highest returns, we've compiled a list of companies that currently earn more than 25% return on equity. Check out this free list here.

Valuation is complex, but we're helping make it simple.

Find out whether Nu Skin Enterprises is potentially over or undervalued by checking out our comprehensive analysis, which includes fair value estimates, risks and warnings, dividends, insider transactions and financial health.

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About NYSE:NUS

Nu Skin Enterprises

Nu Skin Enterprises, Inc. develops and distributes beauty and wellness products worldwide.

The Snowflake is a visual investment summary with the score of each axis being calculated by 6 checks in 5 areas.

Analysis AreaScore (0-6)
Valuation2
Future Growth3
Past Performance1
Financial Health6
Dividends4

Read more about these checks in the individual report sections or in our analysis model.

Flawless balance sheet average dividend payer.