If we want to find a potential multi-bagger, often there are underlying trends that can provide clues. Firstly, we'll want to see a proven return on capital employed (ROCE) that is increasing, and secondly, an expanding base of capital employed. Ultimately, this demonstrates that it's a business that is reinvesting profits at increasing rates of return. Speaking of which, we noticed some great changes in Pason Systems' (TSE:PSI) returns on capital, so let's have a look.
Return On Capital Employed (ROCE): What Is It?
Just to clarify if you're unsure, ROCE is a metric for evaluating how much pre-tax income (in percentage terms) a company earns on the capital invested in its business. The formula for this calculation on Pason Systems is:
Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets - Current Liabilities)
0.26 = CA$100m ÷ (CA$463m - CA$80m) (Based on the trailing twelve months to September 2022).
So, Pason Systems has an ROCE of 26%. In absolute terms that's a great return and it's even better than the Energy Services industry average of 8.4%.
Above you can see how the current ROCE for Pason Systems compares to its prior returns on capital, but there's only so much you can tell from the past. If you'd like, you can check out the forecasts from the analysts covering Pason Systems here for free.
What The Trend Of ROCE Can Tell Us
Pason Systems is showing promise given that its ROCE is trending up and to the right. The figures show that over the last five years, ROCE has grown 189% whilst employing roughly the same amount of capital. So it's likely that the business is now reaping the full benefits of its past investments, since the capital employed hasn't changed considerably. It's worth looking deeper into this though because while it's great that the business is more efficient, it might also mean that going forward the areas to invest internally for the organic growth are lacking.
The Key Takeaway
In summary, we're delighted to see that Pason Systems has been able to increase efficiencies and earn higher rates of return on the same amount of capital. Considering the stock has delivered 8.6% to its stockholders over the last five years, it may be fair to think that investors aren't fully aware of the promising trends yet. So exploring more about this stock could uncover a good opportunity, if the valuation and other metrics stack up.
One more thing, we've spotted 1 warning sign facing Pason Systems that you might find interesting.
If you want to search for more stocks that have been earning high returns, check out this free list of stocks with solid balance sheets that are also earning high returns on equity.
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This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. 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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