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ARB Corporation Limited's (ASX:ARB) Stock On An Uptrend: Could Fundamentals Be Driving The Momentum?

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Most readers would already be aware that ARB's (ASX:ARB) stock increased significantly by 20% over the past month. We wonder if and what role the company's financials play in that price change as a company's long-term fundamentals usually dictate market outcomes. Particularly, we will be paying attention to ARB's ROE today.

Return on equity or ROE is a key measure used to assess how efficiently a company's management is utilizing the company's capital. In simpler terms, it measures the profitability of a company in relation to shareholder's equity.

See our latest analysis for ARB

How To Calculate Return On Equity?

ROE 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 ARB is:

15% = AU$57m ÷ AU$372m (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2020).

The 'return' is the amount earned after tax over the last twelve months. That means that for every A$1 worth of shareholders' equity, the company generated A$0.15 in profit.

Why Is ROE Important For Earnings Growth?

So far, we've learned that ROE is a measure of a company's profitability. We now need to evaluate how much profit the company reinvests or "retains" for future growth which then gives us an idea about the growth potential of the company. 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.

ARB's Earnings Growth And 15% ROE

At first glance, ARB seems to have a decent ROE. Further, the company's ROE is similar to the industry average of 16%. Consequently, this likely laid the ground for the decent growth of 5.2% seen over the past five years by ARB.

We then compared ARB's net income growth with the industry and found that the company's growth figure is lower than the average industry growth rate of 13% in the same period, which is a bit concerning.

past-earnings-growth
past-earnings-growth

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). This then helps them determine if the stock is placed for a bright or bleak future. Is ARB fairly valued compared to other companies? These 3 valuation measures might help you decide.

Is ARB Making Efficient Use Of Its Profits?

ARB has a significant three-year median payout ratio of 56%, meaning that it is left with only 44% to reinvest into its business. This implies that the company has been able to achieve decent earnings growth despite returning most of its profits to shareholders.

Besides, ARB has been paying dividends for at least ten years or more. This shows that the company is committed to sharing profits with its shareholders. Based on the latest analysts' estimates, we found that the company's future payout ratio over the next three years is expected to hold steady at 57%. Therefore, the company's future ROE is also not expected to change by much with analysts predicting an ROE of 17%.

Summary

On the whole, we do feel that ARB has some positive attributes. The company has grown its earnings moderately as previously discussed. Still, the high ROE could have been even more beneficial to investors had the company been reinvesting more of its profits. As highlighted earlier, the current reinvestment rate appears to be quite low. Having said that, looking at the current analyst estimates, we found that the company's earnings are expected to gain momentum. Are these analysts expectations based on the broad expectations for the industry, or on the company's fundamentals? Click here to be taken to our analyst's forecasts page 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.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.