Agree Realty (NYSE:ADC) has had a rough week with its share price down 2.2%. But if you pay close attention, you might find that its key financial indicators look quite decent, which could mean that the stock could potentially rise in the long-term given how markets usually reward more resilient long-term fundamentals. Specifically, we decided to study Agree Realty's ROE in this article.
ROE or return on equity is a useful tool to assess how effectively a company can generate returns on the investment it received from its shareholders. In other words, it is a profitability ratio which measures the rate of return on the capital provided by the company's shareholders.
How Is ROE Calculated?
The formula for ROE is:
Return on Equity = Net Profit (from continuing operations) ÷ Shareholders' Equity
So, based on the above formula, the ROE for Agree Realty is:
4.0% = US$91m ÷ US$2.3b (Based on the trailing twelve months to September 2020).
The 'return' refers to a company's earnings over the last year. Another way to think of that is that for every $1 worth of equity, the company was able to earn $0.04 in profit.
Why Is ROE Important For 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 everything else remains unchanged, the higher the ROE and profit retention, the higher the growth rate of a company compared to companies that don't necessarily bear these characteristics.
A Side By Side comparison of Agree Realty's Earnings Growth And 4.0% ROE
As you can see, Agree Realty's ROE looks pretty weak. Even when compared to the industry average of 5.4%, the ROE figure is pretty disappointing. Although, we can see that Agree Realty saw a modest net income growth of 17% over the past five years. We reckon that there could be other factors at play here. For instance, the company has a low payout ratio or is being managed efficiently.
As a next step, we compared Agree Realty's net income growth with the industry, and pleasingly, we found that the growth seen by the company is higher than the average industry growth of 12%.
Earnings growth is an important metric to consider when valuing a stock. The investor should try to establish if the expected growth or decline in earnings, whichever the case may be, is priced in. By doing so, they will have an idea if the stock is headed into clear blue waters or if swampy waters await. Is Agree Realty fairly valued compared to other companies? These 3 valuation measures might help you decide.
Is Agree Realty Making Efficient Use Of Its Profits?
Agree Realty has a high three-year median payout ratio of 77%. This means that it has only 23% of its income left to reinvest into its business. However, it's not unusual to see a REIT with such a high payout ratio mainly due to statutory requirements. In spite of this, the company was able to grow its earnings by a fair bit, as we saw above.
Additionally, Agree Realty has paid dividends over a period of at least ten years which means that the company is pretty serious about sharing its profits with shareholders. Our latest analyst data shows that the future payout ratio of the company over the next three years is expected to be approximately 70%.
In total, it does look like Agree Realty has some positive aspects to its business. While no doubt its earnings growth is pretty substantial, we do feel that the reinvestment rate is pretty low, meaning, the earnings growth number could have been significantly higher had the company been retaining more of its profits. The latest industry analyst forecasts show that the company is expected to maintain its current growth rate. To know more about the latest analysts predictions for the company, check out this visualization of analyst forecasts for the company.
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. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.
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