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180 Degree Capital Corp (NASDAQ:TURN) trades with a trailing P/E of 6.7x, which is lower than the industry average of 16.2x. While this makes TURN appear like a great stock to buy, you might change your mind after I explain the assumptions behind the P/E ratio. In this article, I will explain what the P/E ratio is as well as what you should look out for when using it. View our latest analysis for 180 Degree Capital
Demystifying the P/E ratio
The P/E ratio is a popular ratio used in relative valuation since earnings power is a key driver of investment value. It compares a stock’s price per share to the stock’s earnings per share. A more intuitive way of understanding the P/E ratio is to think of it as how much investors are paying for each dollar of the company’s earnings.
P/E Calculation for TURN
Price-Earnings Ratio = Price per share ÷ Earnings per share
TURN Price-Earnings Ratio = $2.04 ÷ $0.303 = 6.7x
The P/E ratio itself doesn’t tell you a lot; however, it becomes very insightful when you compare it with other similar companies. We preferably want to compare the stock’s P/E ratio to the average of companies that have similar features to TURN, such as capital structure and profitability. One way of gathering a peer group is to use firms in the same industry, which is what I’ll do. At 6.7x, TURN’s P/E is lower than its industry peers (16.2x). This implies that investors are undervaluing each dollar of TURN’s earnings. As such, our analysis shows that TURN represents an under-priced stock.
Assumptions to watch out for
While our conclusion might prompt you to buy TURN immediately, there are two important assumptions you should be aware of. Firstly, our peer group contains companies that are similar to TURN. If this isn’t the case, the difference in P/E could be due to other factors. For example, if you compared higher growth firms with TURN, then its P/E would naturally be lower since investors would reward its peers’ higher growth with a higher price. The second assumption that must hold true is that the stocks we are comparing TURN to are fairly valued by the market. If this is violated, TURN’s P/E may be lower than its peers as they are actually overvalued by investors.
What this means for you:
You may have already conducted fundamental analysis on the stock as a shareholder, so its current undervaluation could signal a good buying opportunity to increase your exposure to TURN. Now that you understand the ins and outs of the PE metric, you should know to bear in mind its limitations before you make an investment decision. Remember that basing your investment decision off one metric alone is certainly not sufficient. There are many things I have not taken into account in this article and the PE ratio is very one-dimensional. If you have not done so already, I urge you to complete your research by taking a look at the following:
Financial Health: Is TURN’s operations financially sustainable? Balance sheets can be hard to analyze, which is why we’ve done it for you. Check out our financial health checks here.
Past Track Record: Has TURN 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 TURN’s historicals for more clarity.
Other High-Performing Stocks: Are there other stocks that provide better prospects with proven track records? Explore our free list of these great stocks here.
To help readers see pass the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price sensitive company announcements.
The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned.