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Most readers would already be aware that Employers Holdings' (NYSE:EIG) stock increased significantly by 8.3% over the past week. As most would know, fundamentals are what usually guide market price movements over the long-term, so we decided to look at the company's key financial indicators today to determine if they have any role to play in the recent price movement. Specifically, we decided to study Employers Holdings' ROE in this article.
Return on equity or ROE is an important factor to be considered by a shareholder because it tells them how effectively their capital is being reinvested. Put another way, it reveals the company's success at turning shareholder investments into profits.
How To Calculate Return On Equity?
Return on equity 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 Employers Holdings is:
6.7% = US$70m ÷ US$1.1b (Based on the trailing twelve months to March 2020).
The 'return' is the profit over the last twelve months. One way to conceptualize this is that for each $1 of shareholders' capital it has, the company made $0.07 in profit.
What Is The Relationship Between ROE And Earnings Growth?
We have already established that ROE serves as an efficient profit-generating gauge for a company's future earnings. Depending on how much of these profits the company reinvests or "retains", and how effectively it does so, we are then able to assess a company’s earnings growth potential. 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.
A Side By Side comparison of Employers Holdings' Earnings Growth And 6.7% ROE
When you first look at it, Employers Holdings' ROE doesn't look that attractive. Next, when compared to the average industry ROE of 8.9%, the company's ROE leaves us feeling even less enthusiastic. However, the moderate 9.2% net income growth seen by Employers Holdings over the past five years is definitely a positive. We reckon that there could be other factors at play here. Such as - high earnings retention or an efficient management in place.
As a next step, we compared Employers Holdings' net income growth with the industry and found that the company has a similar growth figure when compared with the industry average growth rate of 8.3% in the same period.
The basis for attaching value to a company is, to a great extent, tied to its earnings growth. It’s important for an investor to know whether the market has priced in the company's expected earnings growth (or decline). By doing so, they will have an idea if the stock is headed into clear blue waters or if swampy waters await. One good indicator of expected earnings growth is the P/E ratio which determines the price the market is willing to pay for a stock based on its earnings prospects. So, you may want to check if Employers Holdings is trading on a high P/E or a low P/E, relative to its industry.
Is Employers Holdings Efficiently Re-investing Its Profits?
In Employers Holdings' case, its respectable earnings growth can probably be explained by its low three-year median payout ratio of 18% (or a retention ratio of 82%), which suggests that the company is investing most of its profits to grow its business.
Moreover, Employers Holdings is determined to keep sharing its profits with shareholders which we infer from its long history of paying a dividend for at least ten years.
Overall, we feel that Employers Holdings certainly does have some positive factors to consider. With a high rate of reinvestment, albeit at a low ROE, the company has managed to see a considerable growth in its earnings. Having said that, the company's earnings growth is expected to slow down, as forecasted in the current analyst estimates. To know more about the company's future earnings growth forecasts take a look at this free report on analyst forecasts for the company to find out more.
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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