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What does Rigel Pharmaceuticals Inc’s (NASDAQ:RIGL) Balance Sheet Tell Us About Its Future?

Rigel Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:RIGL), which has zero-debt on its balance sheet, can maximize capital returns by increasing debt due to its lower cost of capital. However, the trade-off is RIGL will have to follow strict debt obligations which will reduce its financial flexibility. While RIGL has no debt on its balance sheet, it doesn’t necessarily mean it exhibits financial strength. I will go over a basic overview of the stock’s financial health, which I believe provides a ballpark estimate of their financial health status.

See our latest analysis for Rigel Pharmaceuticals

Is financial flexibility worth the lower cost of capital?

Debt capital generally has lower cost of capital compared to equity funding. But the downside of having debt in a company’s balance sheet is the debtholder’s higher claim on its assets in the case of liquidation, as well as stricter capital management requirements. Either RIGL does not have access to cheap capital, or it may believe this trade-off is not worth it. This makes sense only if the company has a competitive edge and is growing fast off its equity capital. RIGL delivered a negative revenue growth of -11%. While its negative growth hardly justifies opting for zero-debt, if the decline sustains, it may find it hard to raise debt at an acceptable cost.

NasdaqGS:RIGL Historical Debt November 29th 18

Can RIGL meet its short-term obligations with the cash in hand?

Since Rigel Pharmaceuticals doesn’t have any debt on its balance sheet, it doesn’t have any solvency issues, which is a term used to describe the company’s ability to meet its long-term obligations. However, another measure of financial health is its short-term obligations, which is known as liquidity. These include payments to suppliers, employees and other stakeholders. With current liabilities at US$20m, the company has maintained a safe level of current assets to meet its obligations, with the current ratio last standing at 6.15x. However, a ratio above 3x may be considered excessive by some investors.

Next Steps:

Having no debt on the books means RIGL has more financial freedom to keep growing at its current fast rate. This may mean this is an optimal capital structure for the business, given that it is also meeting its short-term commitment. Moving forward, its financial position may change. I admit this is a fairly basic analysis for RIGL’s financial health. Other important fundamentals need to be considered alongside. You should continue to research Rigel Pharmaceuticals to get a more holistic view of the stock by looking at:

  1. Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for RIGL’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for RIGL’s outlook.
  2. Historical Performance: What has RIGL’s returns been like over the past? Go into more detail in the past track record analysis and take a look at the free visual representations of our analysis for more clarity.
  3. 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 past 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. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com.