Here’s What II-VI Incorporated’s (NASDAQ:IIVI) P/E Is Telling Us

Today, we’ll introduce the concept of the P/E ratio for those who are learning about investing. We’ll look at II-VI Incorporated’s (NASDAQ:IIVI) P/E ratio and reflect on what it tells us about the company’s share price. Looking at earnings over the last twelve months, II-VI has a P/E ratio of 20.33. That corresponds to an earnings yield of approximately 4.9%.

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See our latest analysis for II-VI

How Do I Calculate A Price To Earnings Ratio?

The formula for P/E is:

Price to Earnings Ratio = Price per Share ÷ Earnings per Share (EPS)

Or for II-VI:

P/E of 20.33 = $34.26 ÷ $1.69 (Based on the trailing twelve months to March 2019.)

Is A High Price-to-Earnings Ratio Good?

A higher P/E ratio means that investors are paying a higher price for each $1 of company earnings. All else being equal, it’s better to pay a low price — but as Warren Buffett said, ‘It’s far better to buy a wonderful company at a fair price than a fair company at a wonderful price.’

How Growth Rates Impact P/E Ratios

Probably the most important factor in determining what P/E a company trades on is the earnings growth. That’s because companies that grow earnings per share quickly will rapidly increase the ‘E’ in the equation. Therefore, even if you pay a high multiple of earnings now, that multiple will become lower in the future. A lower P/E should indicate the stock is cheap relative to others — and that may attract buyers.

Most would be impressed by II-VI earnings growth of 13% in the last year. And its annual EPS growth rate over 5 years is 21%. With that performance, you might expect an above average P/E ratio.

How Does II-VI’s P/E Ratio Compare To Its Peers?

One good way to get a quick read on what market participants expect of a company is to look at its P/E ratio. You can see in the image below that the average P/E (19.8) for companies in the electronic industry is roughly the same as II-VI’s P/E.

NasdaqGS:IIVI Price Estimation Relative to Market, May 22nd 2019
NasdaqGS:IIVI Price Estimation Relative to Market, May 22nd 2019

That indicates that the market expects II-VI will perform roughly in line with other companies in its industry. If the company has better than average prospects, then the market might be underestimating it. Further research into factors such asmanagement tenure, could help you form your own view on whether that is likely.

A Limitation: P/E Ratios Ignore Debt and Cash In The Bank

It’s important to note that the P/E ratio considers the market capitalization, not the enterprise value. Thus, the metric does not reflect cash or debt held by the company. Theoretically, a business can improve its earnings (and produce a lower P/E in the future) by investing in growth. That means taking on debt (or spending its cash).

Such expenditure might be good or bad, in the long term, but the point here is that the balance sheet is not reflected by this ratio.

How Does II-VI’s Debt Impact Its P/E Ratio?

II-VI’s net debt is 14% of its market cap. That’s enough debt to impact the P/E ratio a little; so keep it in mind if you’re comparing it to companies without debt.

The Verdict On II-VI’s P/E Ratio

II-VI has a P/E of 20.3. That’s higher than the average in the US market, which is 17.7. While the company does use modest debt, its recent earnings growth is very good. So on this analysis it seems reasonable that its P/E ratio is above average.

Investors should be looking to buy stocks that the market is wrong about. As value investor Benjamin Graham famously said, ‘In the short run, the market is a voting machine but in the long run, it is a weighing machine.’ So this free report on the analyst consensus forecasts could help you make a master move on this stock.

You might be able to find a better buy than II-VI. If you want a selection of possible winners, check out this free list of interesting companies that trade on a P/E below 20 (but have proven they can grow earnings).

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.