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Goodwin PLC's (LON:GDWN) Stock Going Strong But Fundamentals Look Weak: What Implications Could This Have On The Stock?

Simply Wall St
·4 mins read

Goodwin (LON:GDWN) has had a great run on the share market with its stock up by a significant 5.1% over the last month. However, we decided to pay close attention to its weak financials as we are doubtful that the current momentum will keep up, given the scenario. In this article, we decided to focus on Goodwin's 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. Simply put, it is used to assess the profitability of a company in relation to its equity capital.

View our latest analysis for Goodwin

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 Goodwin is:

7.6% = UK£8.3m ÷ UK£110m (Based on the trailing twelve months to April 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 £0.08.

Why Is ROE Important For Earnings Growth?

We have already established that ROE serves as an efficient profit-generating gauge for a company's future earnings. We now need to evaluate how much profit the company reinvests or "retains" for future growth which then gives us an idea about the growth potential of the company. 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.

Goodwin's Earnings Growth And 7.6% ROE

At first glance, Goodwin's ROE doesn't look very promising. We then compared the company's ROE to the broader industry and were disappointed to see that the ROE is lower than the industry average of 11%. Hence, the flat earnings seen by Goodwin over the past five years could probably be the result of it having a lower ROE.

Next, on comparing with the industry net income growth, we found that the industry grew its earnings by8.0% in the same period.

past-earnings-growth
past-earnings-growth

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. 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 Goodwin is trading on a high P/E or a low P/E, relative to its industry.

Is Goodwin Efficiently Re-investing Its Profits?

With a high three-year median payout ratio of 61% (implying that the company keeps only 39% of its income) of its business to reinvest into its business), most of Goodwin's profits are being paid to shareholders, which explains the absence of growth in earnings.

In addition, Goodwin has been paying dividends over a period of at least ten years suggesting that keeping up dividend payments is way more important to the management even if it comes at the cost of business growth.

Summary

In total, we would have a hard think before deciding on any investment action concerning Goodwin. The company has seen a lack of earnings growth as a result of retaining very little profits and whatever little it does retain, is being reinvested at a very low rate of return. So far, we've only made a quick discussion around the company's earnings growth. So it may be worth checking this free detailed graph of Goodwin's past earnings, as well as revenue and cash flows to get a deeper insight into the company's performance.

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.