# Intrepid Potash, Inc.'s (NYSE:IPI) Fundamentals Look Pretty Strong: Could The Market Be Wrong About The Stock?

By
Simply Wall St
Published
January 24, 2022

It is hard to get excited after looking at Intrepid Potash's (NYSE:IPI) recent performance, when its stock has declined 25% over the past three months. However, the company's fundamentals look pretty decent, and long-term financials are usually aligned with future market price movements. In this article, we decided to focus on Intrepid Potash'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. Simply put, it is used to assess the profitability of a company in relation to its equity capital.

Check out our latest analysis for Intrepid Potash

### How Do You Calculate Return On Equity?

Return on equity 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 Intrepid Potash is:

5.8% = US\$25m ÷ US\$439m (Based on the trailing twelve months to September 2021).

The 'return' is the yearly profit. One way to conceptualize this is that for each \$1 of shareholders' capital it has, the company made \$0.06 in profit.

### What Is The Relationship Between ROE And Earnings Growth?

We have already established that ROE serves as an efficient profit-generating gauge for a company's future earnings. Based on how much of its profits the company chooses to reinvest or "retain", we are then able to evaluate a company's future ability to generate profits. Assuming all else is equal, companies that have both a higher return on equity and higher profit retention are usually the ones that have a higher growth rate when compared to companies that don't have the same features.

### A Side By Side comparison of Intrepid Potash's Earnings Growth And 5.8% ROE

When you first look at it, Intrepid Potash's ROE doesn't look that attractive. Next, when compared to the average industry ROE of 14%, the company's ROE leaves us feeling even less enthusiastic. In spite of this, Intrepid Potash was able to grow its net income considerably, at a rate of 79% in the last five years. Therefore, there could be other reasons behind this growth. For example, it is possible that the company's management has made some good strategic decisions, or that the company has a low payout ratio.

We then compared Intrepid Potash's net income growth with the industry and we're pleased to see that the company's growth figure is higher when compared with the industry which has a growth rate of 6.1% in the same period.

Earnings growth is a huge factor in stock valuation. It’s important for an investor to know whether the market has priced in the company's expected earnings growth (or decline). By doing so, they will have an idea if the stock is headed into clear blue waters or if swampy waters await. Is Intrepid Potash fairly valued compared to other companies? These 3 valuation measures might help you decide.

### Is Intrepid Potash Using Its Retained Earnings Effectively?

Intrepid Potash doesn't pay any dividend to its shareholders, meaning that the company has been reinvesting all of its profits into the business. This is likely what's driving the high earnings growth number discussed above.

### Conclusion

In total, it does look like Intrepid Potash has some positive aspects to its business. Despite its low rate of return, the fact that the company reinvests a very high portion of its profits into its business, no doubt contributed to its high earnings growth. 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. You can see the 2 risks we have identified for Intrepid Potash by visiting our risks dashboard for free on our platform here.

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