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Is MTU Aero Engines AG’s (ETR:MTX) ROE Of 19.19% Sustainable?

Seth Doty

With an ROE of 19.19%, MTU Aero Engines AG (XTRA:MTX) outpaced its own industry which delivered a less exciting 14.77% over the past year. On the surface, this looks fantastic since we know that MTX has made large profits from little equity capital; however, ROE doesn’t tell us if management have borrowed heavily to make this happen. Today, we’ll take a closer look at some factors like financial leverage to see how sustainable MTX’s ROE is. Check out our latest analysis for MTU Aero Engines

Peeling the layers of ROE – trisecting a company’s profitability

Return on Equity (ROE) weighs MTU Aero Engines’s profit against the level of its shareholders’ equity. It essentially shows how much the company can generate in earnings given the amount of equity it has raised. In most cases, a higher ROE is preferred; however, there are many other factors we must consider prior to making any investment decisions.

Return on Equity = Net Profit ÷ Shareholders Equity

ROE is measured against cost of equity in order to determine the efficiency of MTU Aero Engines’s equity capital deployed. Its cost of equity is 10.36%. Given a positive discrepancy of 8.83% between return and cost, this indicates that MTU Aero Engines pays less for its capital than what it generates in return, which is a sign of capital efficiency. ROE can be split up into three useful ratios: net profit margin, asset turnover, and financial leverage. This is called the Dupont Formula:

Dupont Formula

ROE = profit margin × asset turnover × financial leverage

ROE = (annual net profit ÷ sales) × (sales ÷ assets) × (assets ÷ shareholders’ equity)

ROE = annual net profit ÷ shareholders’ equity

XTRA:MTX Last Perf Jun 12th 18

The first component is profit margin, which measures how much of sales is retained after the company pays for all its expenses. Asset turnover shows how much revenue MTU Aero Engines can generate with its current asset base. And finally, financial leverage is simply how much of assets are funded by equity, which exhibits how sustainable the company’s capital structure is. Since ROE can be inflated by excessive debt, we need to examine MTU Aero Engines’s debt-to-equity level. The debt-to-equity ratio currently stands at a sensible 54.67%, meaning the above-average ROE is due to its capacity to produce profit growth without a huge debt burden.

XTRA:MTX Historical Debt Jun 12th 18

Next Steps:

ROE is one of many ratios which meaningfully dissects financial statements, which illustrates the quality of a company. MTU Aero Engines exhibits a strong ROE against its peers, as well as sufficient returns to cover its cost of equity. ROE is not likely to be inflated by excessive debt funding, giving shareholders more conviction in the sustainability of high returns. Although ROE can be a useful metric, it is only a small part of diligent research.

For MTU Aero Engines, there are three pertinent aspects you should look at:

  1. Financial Health: Does it have a healthy balance sheet? Take a look at our free balance sheet analysis with six simple checks on key factors like leverage and risk.
  2. Valuation: What is MTU Aero Engines worth today? Is the stock undervalued, even when its growth outlook is factored into its intrinsic value? The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether MTU Aero Engines is currently mispriced by the market.
  3. Other High-Growth Alternatives : Are there other high-growth stocks you could be holding instead of MTU Aero Engines? Explore our interactive list of stocks with large growth potential to get an idea of what else is out there you may be missing!


To help readers see pass the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price sensitive company announcements.

The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned.