Balchem's (NASDAQ:BCPC) stock up by 1.1% over the past three months. Given that the market rewards strong financials in the long-term, we wonder if that is the case in this instance. Particularly, we will be paying attention to Balchem's ROE today.
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. Put another way, it reveals the company's success at turning shareholder investments into profits.
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 Balchem is:
10% = US$88m ÷ US$849m (Based on the trailing twelve months to March 2021).
The 'return' is the income the business earned over the last year. Another way to think of that is that for every $1 worth of equity, the company was able to earn $0.10 in profit.
What Has ROE Got To Do With 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. Generally speaking, other things being equal, firms with a high return on equity and profit retention, have a higher growth rate than firms that don’t share these attributes.
A Side By Side comparison of Balchem's Earnings Growth And 10% ROE
To begin with, Balchem seems to have a respectable ROE. And on comparing with the industry, we found that the the average industry ROE is similar at 12%. This probably goes some way in explaining Balchem's moderate 8.0% growth over the past five years amongst other factors.
As a next step, we compared Balchem'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 3.3%.
Earnings growth is a huge factor in stock valuation. What investors need to determine next is if the expected earnings growth, or the lack of it, is already built into the share price. By doing so, they will have an idea if the stock is headed into clear blue waters or if swampy waters await. Is Balchem fairly valued compared to other companies? These 3 valuation measures might help you decide.
Is Balchem Using Its Retained Earnings Effectively?
In Balchem's case, its respectable earnings growth can probably be explained by its low three-year median payout ratio of 19% (or a retention ratio of 81%), which suggests that the company is investing most of its profits to grow its business.
Moreover, Balchem is determined to keep sharing its profits with shareholders which we infer from its long history of paying a dividend for at least ten years. Our latest analyst data shows that the future payout ratio of the company over the next three years is expected to be approximately 16%. As a result, Balchem's ROE is not expected to change by much either, which we inferred from the analyst estimate of 10% for future ROE.
In total, we are pretty happy with Balchem's performance. In particular, it's great to see that the company is investing heavily into its business and along with a high rate of return, that has resulted in a sizeable growth in its earnings. That being so, a study of the latest analyst forecasts show that the company is expected to see a slowdown in its future earnings growth. 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.
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