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How Columbus McKinnon Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCO) Can Impact Your Portfolio Volatility

Simply Wall St

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If you're interested in Columbus McKinnon Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCO), then you might want to consider its beta (a measure of share price volatility) in order to understand how the stock could impact your portfolio. Volatility is considered to be a measure of risk in modern finance theory. Investors may think of volatility as falling into two main categories. The first category is company specific volatility. This can be dealt with by limiting your exposure to any particular stock. The second sort is caused by the natural volatility of markets, overall. For example, certain macroeconomic events will impact (virtually) all stocks on the market.

Some stocks are more sensitive to general market forces than others. Beta is a widely used metric to measure a stock's exposure to market risk (volatility). Before we go on, it's worth noting that Warren Buffett pointed out in his 2014 letter to shareholders that 'volatility is far from synonymous with risk.' Having said that, beta can still be rather useful. The first thing to understand about beta is that the beta of the overall market is one. A stock with a beta greater than one is more sensitive to broader market movements than a stock with a beta of less than one.

See our latest analysis for Columbus McKinnon

What we can learn from CMCO's beta value

Given that it has a beta of 1.8, we can surmise that the Columbus McKinnon share price has been fairly sensitive to market volatility (over the last 5 years). Based on this history, investors should be aware that Columbus McKinnon are likely to rise strongly in times of greed, but sell off in times of fear. Beta is worth considering, but it's also important to consider whether Columbus McKinnon is growing earnings and revenue. You can take a look for yourself, below.

NasdaqGS:CMCO Income Statement, June 2nd 2019

Could CMCO's size cause it to be more volatile?

Columbus McKinnon is a small cap stock with a market capitalisation of US$849m. Most companies this size are actively traded. It is quite common to see a small-cap stock with a beta greater than one. In part, that's because relatively few investors can influence the price of a smaller company, compared to a large company.

What this means for you:

Since Columbus McKinnon tends to moves up when the market is going up, and down when it's going down, potential investors may wish to reflect on the overall market, when considering the stock. This article aims to educate investors about beta values, but it's well worth looking at important company-specific fundamentals such as Columbus McKinnon’s financial health and performance track record. I urge you to continue your research by taking a look at the following:

  1. Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for CMCO’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for CMCO’s outlook.
  2. Past Track Record: Has CMCO been consistently performing well irrespective of the ups and downs in the market? Go into more detail in the past performance analysis and take a look at the free visual representations of CMCO's historicals for more clarity.
  3. Other Interesting Stocks: It's worth checking to see how CMCO measures up against other companies on valuation. You could start with this free list of prospective options.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. 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. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.