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Most readers would already be aware that EastGroup Properties' (NYSE:EGP) stock increased significantly by 12% over the past three months. Given that stock prices are usually aligned with a company's financial performance in the long-term, we decided to study its financial indicators more closely to see if they had a hand to play in the recent price move. In this article, we decided to focus on EastGroup Properties' ROE.
Return on equity or ROE is a key measure used to assess how efficiently a company's management is utilizing the company's capital. In simpler terms, it measures the profitability of a company in relation to shareholder's equity.
How Do You Calculate Return On Equity?
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 EastGroup Properties is:
8.5% = US$112m ÷ US$1.3b (Based on the trailing twelve months to March 2021).
The 'return' is the profit over the last twelve months. Another way to think of that is that for every $1 worth of equity, the company was able to earn $0.09 in profit.
What Has ROE Got To Do With 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. Assuming everything else remains unchanged, the higher the ROE and profit retention, the higher the growth rate of a company compared to companies that don't necessarily bear these characteristics.
EastGroup Properties' Earnings Growth And 8.5% ROE
On the face of it, EastGroup Properties' ROE is not much to talk about. However, the fact that the company's ROE is higher than the average industry ROE of 5.1%, is definitely interesting. This certainly adds some context to EastGroup Properties' moderate 8.6% net income growth seen over the past five years. Bear in mind, the company does have a moderately low ROE. It is just that the industry ROE is lower. Therefore, the growth in earnings could also be the result of other factors. Such as- high earnings retention or the company belonging to a high growth industry.
Next, on comparing EastGroup Properties' net income growth with the industry, we found that the company's reported growth is similar to the industry average growth rate of 9.9% in the same period.
Earnings growth is a huge factor in stock valuation. It’s important for an investor to know whether the market has priced in the company's expected earnings growth (or decline). Doing so will help them establish if the stock's future looks promising or ominous. Is EGP fairly valued? This infographic on the company's intrinsic value has everything you need to know.
Is EastGroup Properties Using Its Retained Earnings Effectively?
EastGroup Properties has a high three-year median payout ratio of 57%. This means that it has only 43% of its income left to reinvest into its business. However, it's not unusual to see a REIT with such a high payout ratio mainly due to statutory requirements. Despite this, the company's earnings grew moderately as we saw above.
Besides, EastGroup Properties has been paying dividends for at least ten years or more. This shows that the company is committed to sharing profits with its shareholders. Our latest analyst data shows that the future payout ratio of the company over the next three years is expected to be approximately 52%. As a result, EastGroup Properties' ROE is not expected to change by much either, which we inferred from the analyst estimate of 8.0% for future ROE.
On the whole, we do feel that EastGroup Properties has some positive attributes. Especially the substantial growth in earnings backed by a decent ROE. Despite the company reinvesting only a small portion of its profits, it still has managed to grow its earnings so that is appreciable. We also studied the latest analyst forecasts and found that the company's earnings growth is expected be similar to its current growth rate. To know more about the latest analysts predictions for the company, check out this visualization of analyst forecasts for the company.
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.
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