U.S. markets open in 9 hours 19 minutes
  • S&P Futures

    4,006.50
    +3.25 (+0.08%)
     
  • Dow Futures

    34,017.00
    +31.00 (+0.09%)
     
  • Nasdaq Futures

    11,805.50
    -0.25 (-0.00%)
     
  • Russell 2000 Futures

    1,843.60
    +1.70 (+0.09%)
     
  • Crude Oil

    77.22
    +0.29 (+0.38%)
     
  • Gold

    1,783.40
    +2.10 (+0.12%)
     
  • Silver

    22.51
    +0.09 (+0.41%)
     
  • EUR/USD

    1.0495
    -0.0002 (-0.02%)
     
  • 10-Yr Bond

    3.5990
    +0.0930 (+2.65%)
     
  • Vix

    20.75
    +1.69 (+8.87%)
     
  • GBP/USD

    1.2194
    -0.0000 (-0.00%)
     
  • USD/JPY

    136.8570
    +0.1720 (+0.13%)
     
  • BTC-USD

    17,014.46
    -355.37 (-2.05%)
     
  • CMC Crypto 200

    401.89
    -9.32 (-2.27%)
     
  • FTSE 100

    7,567.54
    +11.31 (+0.15%)
     
  • Nikkei 225

    27,891.70
    +71.30 (+0.26%)
     

Is Stanley Black & Decker, Inc.'s (NYSE:SWK) 10% ROE Better Than Average?

One of the best investments we can make is in our own knowledge and skill set. With that in mind, this article will work through how we can use Return On Equity (ROE) to better understand a business. By way of learning-by-doing, we'll look at ROE to gain a better understanding of Stanley Black & Decker, Inc. (NYSE:SWK).

Return on Equity or ROE is a test of how effectively a company is growing its value and managing investors’ money. Put another way, it reveals the company's success at turning shareholder investments into profits.

View our latest analysis for Stanley Black & Decker

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 Stanley Black & Decker is:

10% = US$941m ÷ US$9.1b (Based on the trailing twelve months to July 2022).

The 'return' is the income the business earned over the last year. That means that for every $1 worth of shareholders' equity, the company generated $0.10 in profit.

Does Stanley Black & Decker Have A Good ROE?

One simple way to determine if a company has a good return on equity is to compare it to the average for its industry. Importantly, this is far from a perfect measure, because companies differ significantly within the same industry classification. You can see in the graphic below that Stanley Black & Decker has an ROE that is fairly close to the average for the Machinery industry (13%).

roe
roe

That isn't amazing, but it is respectable. Even if the ROE is respectable when compared to the industry, its worth checking if the firm's ROE is being aided by high debt levels. If so, this increases its exposure to financial risk. You can see the 4 risks we have identified for Stanley Black & Decker by visiting our risks dashboard for free on our platform here.

The Importance Of Debt To Return On Equity

Virtually all companies need money to invest in the business, to grow profits. That cash can come from issuing shares, retained earnings, or debt. In the first two cases, the ROE will capture this use of capital to grow. In the latter case, the use of debt will improve the returns, but will not change the equity. Thus the use of debt can improve ROE, albeit along with extra risk in the case of stormy weather, metaphorically speaking.

Combining Stanley Black & Decker's Debt And Its 10% Return On Equity

Stanley Black & Decker does use a high amount of debt to increase returns. It has a debt to equity ratio of 1.23. The combination of a rather low ROE and significant use of debt is not particularly appealing. Debt increases risk and reduces options for the company in the future, so you generally want to see some good returns from using it.

Summary

Return on equity is useful for comparing the quality of different businesses. In our books, the highest quality companies have high return on equity, despite low debt. If two companies have around the same level of debt to equity, and one has a higher ROE, I'd generally prefer the one with higher ROE.

But when a business is high quality, the market often bids it up to a price that reflects this. It is important to consider other factors, such as future profit growth -- and how much investment is required going forward. So I think it may be worth checking this free report on analyst forecasts for the company.

Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies.

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

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.

Join A Paid User Research Session
You’ll receive a US$30 Amazon Gift card for 1 hour of your time while helping us build better investing tools for the individual investors like yourself. Sign up here