If you own shares in Calix, Inc. (NYSE:CALX) then it’s worth thinking about how it contributes to the volatility of your portfolio, overall. In finance, Beta is a measure of volatility. Volatility is considered to be a measure of risk in modern finance theory. Investors may think of volatility as falling into two main categories. The first category is company specific volatility. This can be dealt with by limiting your exposure to any particular stock. The other type, which cannot be diversified away, is the volatility of the entire market. Every stock in the market is exposed to this volatility, which is linked to the fact that stocks prices are correlated in an efficient market.
Some stocks see their prices move in concert with the market. Others tend towards stronger, gentler or unrelated price movements. Beta is a widely used metric to measure a stock’s exposure to market risk (volatility). Before we go on, it’s worth noting that Warren Buffett pointed out in his 2014 letter to shareholders that ‘volatility is far from synonymous with risk.’ Having said that, beta can still be rather useful. The first thing to understand about beta is that the beta of the overall market is one. Any stock with a beta of greater than one is considered more volatile than the market, while those with a beta below one are either less volatile or poorly correlated with the market.
What CALX’s beta value tells investors
Given that it has a beta of 0.87, we can surmise that the Calix share price has not been strongly impacted by broader market volatility (over the last 5 years). This means that — if history is a guide — buying the stock would reduce the impact of overall market volatility in many portfolios (depending on the beta of the portfolio, of course). Share price volatility is well worth considering, but most long term investors consider the history of revenue and earnings growth to be more important. Take a look at how Calix fares in that regard, below.
Does CALX’s size influence the expected beta?
Calix is a noticeably small company, with a market capitalisation of US$494m. Most companies this size are not always actively traded. Very small companies often have a low beta value because their share prices are not well correlated with market volatility. This could be because the price is reacting to company specific events. Alternatively, the shares may not be actively traded.
What this means for you:
One potential advantage of owning low beta stocks like Calix is that your overall portfolio won’t be too sensitive to overall market movements. However, this can be a blessing or a curse, depending on what’s happening in the broader market. In order to fully understand whether CALX is a good investment for you, we also need to consider important company-specific fundamentals such as Calix’s financial health and performance track record. I urge you to continue your research by taking a look at the following:
- Financial Health: Are CALX’s operations financially sustainable? Balance sheets can be hard to analyze, which is why we’ve done it for you. Check out our financial health checks here.
- Past Track Record: Has CALX been consistently performing well irrespective of the ups and downs in the market? Go into more detail in the past performance analysis and take a look at the free visual representations of CALX’s historicals for more clarity.
- Other High-Performing Stocks: Are there other stocks that provide better prospects with proven track records? Explore our free list of these great stocks here.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.