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Has Gallantt Ispat Limited (NSE:GALLISPAT) Been Employing Capital Shrewdly?

Simply Wall St

Today we'll evaluate Gallantt Ispat Limited (NSE:GALLISPAT) to determine whether it could have potential as an investment idea. Specifically, we're going to calculate its Return On Capital Employed (ROCE), in the hopes of getting some insight into the business.

First of all, we'll work out how to calculate ROCE. Then we'll compare its ROCE to similar companies. Last but not least, we'll look at what impact its current liabilities have on its ROCE.

Return On Capital Employed (ROCE): What is it?

ROCE is a measure of a company's yearly pre-tax profit (its return), relative to the capital employed in the business. In general, businesses with a higher ROCE are usually better quality. Ultimately, it is a useful but imperfect metric. Author Edwin Whiting says to be careful when comparing the ROCE of different businesses, since 'No two businesses are exactly alike.'

How Do You Calculate Return On Capital Employed?

Analysts use this formula to calculate return on capital employed:

Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets - Current Liabilities)

Or for Gallantt Ispat:

0.13 = ₹1.4b ÷ (₹12b - ₹1.5b) (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2019.)

So, Gallantt Ispat has an ROCE of 13%.

See our latest analysis for Gallantt Ispat

Does Gallantt Ispat Have A Good ROCE?

ROCE can be useful when making comparisons, such as between similar companies. We can see Gallantt Ispat's ROCE is around the 14% average reported by the Metals and Mining industry. Aside from the industry comparison, Gallantt Ispat's ROCE is mediocre in absolute terms, considering the risk of investing in stocks versus the safety of a bank account. Readers may find more attractive investment prospects elsewhere.

In our analysis, Gallantt Ispat's ROCE appears to be 13%, compared to 3 years ago, when its ROCE was 8.4%. This makes us wonder if the company is improving. You can see in the image below how Gallantt Ispat's ROCE compares to its industry. Click to see more on past growth.

NSEI:GALLISPAT Past Revenue and Net Income, August 18th 2019

When considering this metric, keep in mind that it is backwards looking, and not necessarily predictive. ROCE can be misleading for companies in cyclical industries, with returns looking impressive during the boom times, but very weak during the busts. ROCE is, after all, simply a snap shot of a single year. Given the industry it operates in, Gallantt Ispat could be considered cyclical. Future performance is what matters, and you can see analyst predictions in our free report on analyst forecasts for the company.

Gallantt Ispat's Current Liabilities And Their Impact On Its ROCE

Current liabilities include invoices, such as supplier payments, short-term debt, or a tax bill, that need to be paid within 12 months. The ROCE equation subtracts current liabilities from capital employed, so a company with a lot of current liabilities appears to have less capital employed, and a higher ROCE than otherwise. To counter this, investors can check if a company has high current liabilities relative to total assets.

Gallantt Ispat has total assets of ₹12b and current liabilities of ₹1.5b. Therefore its current liabilities are equivalent to approximately 12% of its total assets. This very reasonable level of current liabilities would not boost the ROCE by much.

The Bottom Line On Gallantt Ispat's ROCE

If Gallantt Ispat continues to earn an uninspiring ROCE, there may be better places to invest. Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking at a few good candidates. So take a peek at this free list of companies with modest (or no) debt, trading on a P/E below 20.

I will like Gallantt Ispat better if I see some big insider buys. While we wait, check out this free list of growing companies with considerable, recent, insider buying.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. 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. Thank you for reading.