If you're interested in Brunswick Corporation (NYSE:BC), 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 other type, which cannot be diversified away, is the volatility of the entire market. Every stock in the market is exposed to this volatility, which is linked to the fact that stocks prices are correlated in an efficient market.
Some stocks mimic the volatility of the market quite closely, while others demonstrate muted, exagerrated or uncorrelated price movements. 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. Any stock with a beta of greater than one is considered more volatile than the market, while those with a beta below one are either less volatile or poorly correlated with the market.
What BC's beta value tells investors
Given that it has a beta of 1.81, we can surmise that the Brunswick share price has been fairly sensitive to market volatility (over the last 5 years). If the past is any guide, we would expect that Brunswick shares will rise quicker than the markets in times of optimism, but fall faster in times of pessimism. Beta is worth considering, but it's also important to consider whether Brunswick is growing earnings and revenue. You can take a look for yourself, below.
Could BC's size cause it to be more volatile?
With a market capitalisation of US$2.2b, Brunswick is a pretty big company, even by global standards. It is quite likely well known to very many investors. It has a relatively high beta, suggesting it may be somehow leveraged to macroeconomic conditions. For example, it might be a high growth stock with lots of investors trading the shares. It's notable when large companies to have high beta values, because it usually takes substantial capital flows to move their share prices.
What this means for you:
Since Brunswick has a reasonably high beta, it's worth considering why it is so heavily influenced by broader market sentiment. For example, it might be a high growth stock or have a lot of operating leverage in its business model. In order to fully understand whether BC is a good investment for you, we also need to consider important company-specific fundamentals such as Brunswick’s financial health and performance track record. I highly recommend you dive deeper by considering the following:
- Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for BC’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for BC’s outlook.
- Past Track Record: Has BC 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 BC's historicals for more clarity.
- Other Interesting Stocks: It's worth checking to see how BC measures up against other companies on valuation. You could start with this free list of prospective options.
If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.
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