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Citi Trends, Inc.'s (NASDAQ:CTRN) Financials Are Too Obscure To Link With Current Share Price Momentum: What's In Store For the Stock?

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·4 min read
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Citi Trends' (NASDAQ:CTRN) stock is up by a considerable 92% over the past three months. However, we wonder if the company's inconsistent financials would have any adverse impact on the current share price momentum. Specifically, we decided to study Citi Trends' ROE in this article.

Return on Equity or ROE is a test of how effectively a company is growing its value and managing investors’ money. In simpler terms, it measures the profitability of a company in relation to shareholder's equity.

See our latest analysis for Citi Trends

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 Citi Trends is:

9.5% = US$15m ÷ US$161m (Based on the trailing twelve months to October 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 $0.10 in profit.

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. 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.

Citi Trends' Earnings Growth And 9.5% ROE

At first glance, Citi Trends' ROE doesn't look very promising. A quick further study shows that the company's ROE doesn't compare favorably to the industry average of 16% either. Given the circumstances, the significant decline in net income by 6.1% seen by Citi Trends over the last five years is not surprising. However, there could also be other factors causing the earnings to decline. Such as - low earnings retention or poor allocation of capital.

That being said, we compared Citi Trends' performance with the industry and were concerned when we found that while the company has shrunk its earnings, the industry has grown its earnings at a rate of 6.3% in the same period.

past-earnings-growth
past-earnings-growth

Earnings growth is a huge factor in stock valuation. The investor should try to establish if the expected growth or decline in earnings, whichever the case may be, is priced in. Doing so will help them establish if the stock's future looks promising or ominous. One good indicator of expected earnings growth is the P/E ratio which determines the price the market is willing to pay for a stock based on its earnings prospects. So, you may want to check if Citi Trends is trading on a high P/E or a low P/E, relative to its industry.

Is Citi Trends Efficiently Re-investing Its Profits?

While the company did payout a portion of its dividend in the past, it currently doesn't pay a dividend. This implies that potentially all of its profits are being reinvested in the business.

Summary

In total, we're a bit ambivalent about Citi Trends' performance. While the company does have a high rate of profit retention, its low rate of return is probably hampering its earnings growth. Wrapping up, we would proceed with caution with this company and one way of doing that would be to look at the risk profile of the business. To know the 3 risks we have identified for Citi Trends visit our risks dashboard for free.

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@simplywallst.com.