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Is Energy Recovery, Inc.'s(NASDAQ:ERII) Recent Stock Performance Tethered To Its Strong Fundamentals?

Simply Wall St


Energy Recovery (NASDAQ:ERII) has had a great run on the share market with its stock up by a significant 21% over the last month. Given that the market rewards strong financials in the long-term, we wonder if that is the case in this instance. Specifically, we decided to study Energy Recovery's ROE in this article.

ROE or return on equity is a useful tool to assess how effectively a company can generate returns on the investment it received from its shareholders. In simpler terms, it measures the profitability of a company in relation to shareholder's equity.


View our latest analysis for Energy Recovery

How Is ROE Calculated?

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 Energy Recovery is:

14% = US$22m ÷ US$157m (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2020).

The 'return' is the profit over the last twelve months. So, this means that for every $1 of its shareholder's investments, the company generates a profit of $0.14.

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. Generally speaking, other things being equal, firms with a high return on equity and profit retention, have a higher growth rate than firms that don’t share these attributes.

Energy Recovery's Earnings Growth And 14% ROE

To begin with, Energy Recovery seems to have a respectable ROE. On comparing with the average industry ROE of 10% the company's ROE looks pretty remarkable. This probably laid the ground for Energy Recovery's significant 53% net income growth seen over the past five years. We reckon that there could also be other factors at play here. For example, it is possible that the company's management has made some good strategic decisions, or that the company has a low payout ratio.

As a next step, we compared Energy Recovery's net income growth with the industry, and pleasingly, we found that the growth seen by the company is higher than the average industry growth of 11%.

past-earnings-growth
past-earnings-growth

The basis for attaching value to a company is, to a great extent, tied to its earnings growth. What investors need to determine next is if the expected earnings growth, or the lack of it, is already built into the share price. This then helps them determine if the stock is placed for a bright or bleak future. If you're wondering about Energy Recovery's's valuation, check out this gauge of its price-to-earnings ratio, as compared to its industry.

Is Energy Recovery Making Efficient Use Of Its Profits?

Energy Recovery doesn't pay any dividend to its shareholders, meaning that the company has been reinvesting all of its profits into the business. This is likely what's driving the high earnings growth number discussed above.

Summary

On the whole, we feel that Energy Recovery's performance has been quite good. Particularly, we like that the company is reinvesting heavily into its business, and at a high rate of return. Unsurprisingly, this has led to an impressive earnings growth. Having said that, on studying current analyst estimates, we were concerned to see that while the company has grown its earnings in the past, analysts expect its earnings to shrink in the future. Are these analysts expectations based on the broad expectations for the industry, or on the company's fundamentals? Click here to be taken to our analyst's forecasts page 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.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team@simplywallst.com.