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SPX FLOW, Inc.'s (NYSE:FLOW) Fundamentals Look Pretty Strong: Could The Market Be Wrong About The Stock?

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With its stock down 4.7% over the past three months, it is easy to disregard SPX FLOW (NYSE:FLOW). However, the company's fundamentals look pretty decent, and long-term financials are usually aligned with future market price movements. In this article, we decided to focus on SPX FLOW's ROE.

ROE or return on equity is a useful tool to assess how effectively a company can generate returns on the investment it received from its shareholders. Put another way, it reveals the company's success at turning shareholder investments into profits.

See our latest analysis for SPX FLOW

How To Calculate Return On Equity?

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 SPX FLOW is:

6.0% = US$62m ÷ US$1.0b (Based on the trailing twelve months to April 2021).

The 'return' refers to a company's earnings over the last year. Another way to think of that is that for every $1 worth of equity, the company was able to earn $0.06 in profit.

What Has ROE Got To Do With Earnings Growth?

So far, we've learned that ROE is a measure of a company's profitability. Depending on how much of these profits the company reinvests or "retains", and how effectively it does so, we are then able to assess a company’s earnings growth potential. 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.

SPX FLOW's Earnings Growth And 6.0% ROE

When you first look at it, SPX FLOW's ROE doesn't look that attractive. Next, when compared to the average industry ROE of 11%, the company's ROE leaves us feeling even less enthusiastic. Despite this, surprisingly, SPX FLOW saw an exceptional 65% net income growth over the past five years. Therefore, there could be other reasons behind this growth. For example, it is possible that the company's management has made some good strategic decisions, or that the company has a low payout ratio.

As a next step, we compared SPX FLOW's net income growth with the industry, and pleasingly, we found that the growth seen by the company is higher than the average industry growth of 7.8%.

past-earnings-growth
past-earnings-growth

Earnings growth is an important metric to consider when valuing a stock. The investor should try to establish if the expected growth or decline in earnings, whichever the case may be, is priced in. Doing so will help them establish if the stock's future looks promising or ominous. What is FLOW worth today? The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether FLOW is currently mispriced by the market.

Is SPX FLOW Using Its Retained Earnings Effectively?

SPX FLOW has a really low three-year median payout ratio of 6.1%, meaning that it has the remaining 94% left over to reinvest into its business. This suggests that the management is reinvesting most of the profits to grow the business as evidenced by the growth seen by the company.

Looking at the current analyst consensus data, we can see that the company's future payout ratio is expected to rise to 11% over the next three years. However, SPX FLOW's future ROE is expected to rise to 11% despite the expected increase in the company's payout ratio. We infer that there could be other factors that could be driving the anticipated growth in the company's ROE.

Conclusion

On the whole, we do feel that SPX FLOW has some positive attributes. Even in spite of the low rate of return, the company has posted impressive earnings growth as a result of reinvesting heavily into its business. That being so, a study of the latest analyst forecasts show that the company is expected to see a slowdown in its future earnings growth. 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.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.