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It is hard to get excited after looking at Kilroy Realty's (NYSE:KRC) recent performance, when its stock has declined 18% over the past three months. It seems that the market might have completely ignored the positive aspects of the company's fundamentals and decided to weigh-in more on the negative aspects. Stock prices are usually driven by a company’s financial performance over the long term, and therefore we decided to pay more attention to the company's financial performance. Particularly, we will be paying attention to Kilroy Realty's ROE today.
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 short, ROE shows the profit each dollar generates with respect to its shareholder investments.
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 Kilroy Realty is:
3.7% = US$196m ÷ US$5.3b (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2020).
The 'return' refers to a company's earnings over the last year. So, this means that for every $1 of its shareholder's investments, the company generates a profit of $0.04.
Why Is ROE Important For Earnings Growth?
So far, we've learned that ROE is a measure of a company's profitability. 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. Assuming all else is equal, companies that have both a higher return on equity and higher profit retention are usually the ones that have a higher growth rate when compared to companies that don't have the same features.
Kilroy Realty's Earnings Growth And 3.7% ROE
It is hard to argue that Kilroy Realty's ROE is much good in and of itself. Even compared to the average industry ROE of 5.1%, the company's ROE is quite dismal. Hence, the flat earnings seen by Kilroy Realty 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 by13% in the same period.
Earnings growth is a huge factor in stock valuation. The investor should try to establish if the expected growth or decline in earnings, whichever the case may be, is priced in. This then helps them determine if the stock is placed for a bright or bleak future. What is KRC worth today? The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether KRC is currently mispriced by the market.
Is Kilroy Realty Making Efficient Use Of Its Profits?
In spite of a normal three-year median payout ratio of 48% (or a retention ratio of 52%), Kilroy Realty hasn't seen much growth in its earnings. So there could be some other explanation in that regard. For instance, the company's business may be deteriorating.
Moreover, Kilroy Realty has been paying dividends for at least ten years or more suggesting that management must have perceived that the shareholders prefer dividends over earnings growth. Upon studying the latest analysts' consensus data, we found that the company is expected to keep paying out approximately 48% of its profits over the next three years. As a result, Kilroy Realty's ROE is not expected to change by much either, which we inferred from the analyst estimate of 3.7% for future ROE.
On the whole, we feel that the performance shown by Kilroy Realty can be open to many interpretations. Even though it appears to be retaining most of its profits, given the low ROE, investors may not be benefitting from all that reinvestment after all. The low earnings growth suggests our theory correct. With that said, we studied the latest analyst forecasts and found that while the company has shrunk its earnings in the past, analysts expect its earnings to grow in the future. 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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