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Church & Dwight Co., Inc. (NYSE:CHD) Stock Has Shown Weakness Lately But Financials Look Strong: Should Prospective Shareholders Make The Leap?

With its stock down 10% over the past three months, it is easy to disregard Church & Dwight (NYSE:CHD). However, stock prices are usually driven by a company’s financial performance over the long term, which in this case looks quite promising. Particularly, we will be paying attention to Church & Dwight'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 Church & Dwight

How Is ROE Calculated?

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 Church & Dwight is:

20% = US$737m ÷ US$3.7b (Based on the trailing twelve months to September 2022).

The 'return' is the amount earned after tax over the last twelve months. So, this means that for every $1 of its shareholder's investments, the company generates a profit of $0.20.

What Is The Relationship Between ROE And Earnings Growth?

We have already established that ROE serves as an efficient profit-generating gauge for a company's future earnings. Depending on how much of these profits the company reinvests or "retains", and how effectively it does so, we are then able to assess a company’s earnings growth potential. 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 Church & Dwight's Earnings Growth And 20% ROE

To begin with, Church & Dwight seems to have a respectable ROE. And on comparing with the industry, we found that the the average industry ROE is similar at 17%. Despite the modest returns, Church & Dwight's five year net income growth was quite low, averaging at only 4.7%. So, there could be some other factors at play that could be impacting the company's growth. For instance, the company pays out a huge portion of its earnings as dividends, or is faced with competitive pressures.

Next, on comparing Church & Dwight's net income growth with the industry, we found that the company's reported growth is similar to the industry average growth rate of 5.4% in the same period.

past-earnings-growth
past-earnings-growth

The basis for attaching value to a company is, to a great extent, tied to its earnings growth. 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. What is CHD worth today? The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether CHD is currently mispriced by the market.

Is Church & Dwight Efficiently Re-investing Its Profits?

Despite having a moderate three-year median payout ratio of 31% (implying that the company retains the remaining 69% of its income), Church & Dwight's earnings growth was quite low. So there could be some other explanation in that regard. For instance, the company's business may be deteriorating.

In addition, Church & Dwight has been paying dividends over a period of at least ten years suggesting that keeping up dividend payments is way more important to the management even if it comes at the cost of business growth. Our latest analyst data shows that the future payout ratio of the company over the next three years is expected to be approximately 35%. Accordingly, forecasts suggest that Church & Dwight's future ROE will be 21% which is again, similar to the current ROE.

Conclusion

On the whole, we feel that Church & Dwight's performance has been quite good. Particularly, we like that the company is reinvesting heavily into its business, and at a high rate of return. As a result, the decent growth in its earnings is not surprising. The latest industry analyst forecasts show that the company is expected to maintain its current growth rate. To know more about the company's future earnings growth forecasts take a look at this free report on analyst forecasts for the company to find out more.

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

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. 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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