This article is for investors who would like to improve their understanding of price to earnings ratios (P/E ratios). We’ll look at Hibbett Sports Inc’s (NASDAQ:HIBB) P/E ratio and reflect on what it tells us about the company’s share price. Hibbett Sports has a P/E ratio of 8.82, based on the last twelve months. That corresponds to an earnings yield of approximately 11%.
How Do You Calculate A P/E Ratio?
The formula for price to earnings is:
Price to Earnings Ratio = Share Price ÷ Earnings per Share (EPS)
Or for Hibbett Sports:
P/E of 8.82 = $17.21 ÷ $1.95 (Based on the year to August 2018.)
Is A High Price-to-Earnings Ratio Good?
A higher P/E ratio implies that investors pay a higher price for the earning power of the business. That isn’t a good or a bad thing on its own, but a high P/E means that buyers have a higher opinion of the business’s prospects, relative to stocks with a lower P/E.
How Growth Rates Impact P/E Ratios
If earnings fall then in the future the ‘E’ will be lower. That means unless the share price falls, the P/E will increase in a few years. So while a stock may look cheap based on past earnings, it could be expensive based on future earnings.
Hibbett Sports shrunk earnings per share by 4.7% last year. And over the longer term (5 years) earnings per share have decreased 7.9% annually. So you wouldn’t expect a very high P/E.
How Does Hibbett Sports’s P/E Ratio Compare To Its Peers?
The P/E ratio indicates whether the market has higher or lower expectations of a company. The image below shows that Hibbett Sports has a lower P/E than the average (17) P/E for companies in the specialty retail industry.
Its relatively low P/E ratio indicates that Hibbett Sports shareholders think it will struggle to do as well as other companies in its industry classification. While current expectations are low, the stock could be undervalued if the situation is better than the market assumes. It is arguably worth checking if insiders are buying shares, because that might imply they believe the stock is undervalued.
Don’t Forget: The P/E Does Not Account For Debt or Bank Deposits
The ‘Price’ in P/E reflects the market capitalization of the company. In other words, it does not consider any debt or cash that the company may have on the balance sheet. In theory, a company can lower its future P/E ratio by using cash or debt to invest in growth.
Spending on growth might be good or bad a few years later, but the point is that the P/E ratio does not account for the option (or lack thereof).
Hibbett Sports’s Balance Sheet
Hibbett Sports has net cash of US$117m. That should lead to a higher P/E than if it did have debt, because its strong balance sheets gives it more options.
The Bottom Line On Hibbett Sports’s P/E Ratio
Hibbett Sports has a P/E of 8.8. That’s below the average in the US market, which is 17.9. The recent drop in earnings per share would almost certainly temper expectations, but the net cash position means the company has time to improve: if so, the low P/E could be an opportunity.
Investors should be looking to buy stocks that the market is wrong about. If the reality for a company is not as bad as the P/E ratio indicates, then the share price should increase as the market realizes this. So this free visual report on analyst forecasts could hold they key to an excellent investment decision.
Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking at a few good candidates. So take a peek at this free list of companies with modest (or no) debt, trading on a P/E below 20.
To help readers see past the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements.
The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at email@example.com.