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Should You Be Tempted To Sell Glen Burnie Bancorp (NASDAQ:GLBZ) Because Of Its P/E Ratio?

Michael Canly

The goal of this article is to teach you how to use price to earnings ratios (P/E ratios). We’ll look at Glen Burnie Bancorp’s (NASDAQ:GLBZ) P/E ratio and reflect on what it tells us about the company’s share price. Glen Burnie Bancorp has a price to earnings ratio of 26.5, based on the last twelve months. In other words, at today’s prices, investors are paying $26.5 for every $1 in prior year profit.

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How Do You Calculate A P/E Ratio?

The formula for P/E is:

Price to Earnings Ratio = Price per Share ÷ Earnings per Share (EPS)

Or for Glen Burnie Bancorp:

P/E of 26.5 = $10.6 ÷ $0.40 (Based on the year to September 2018.)

Is A High Price-to-Earnings Ratio Good?

A higher P/E ratio implies that investors pay a higher price for the earning power of the business. All else being equal, it’s better to pay a low price — but as Warren Buffett said, ‘It’s far better to buy a wonderful company at a fair price than a fair company at a wonderful price.’

How Growth Rates Impact P/E Ratios

When earnings fall, the ‘E’ decreases, over time. Therefore, even if you pay a low multiple of earnings now, that multiple will become higher in the future. So while a stock may look cheap based on past earnings, it could be expensive based on future earnings.

Glen Burnie Bancorp saw earnings per share decrease by 24% last year. And EPS is down 23% a year, over the last 5 years. This might lead to muted expectations.

How Does Glen Burnie Bancorp’s P/E Ratio Compare To Its Peers?

The P/E ratio indicates whether the market has higher or lower expectations of a company. As you can see below, Glen Burnie Bancorp has a higher P/E than the average company (14.6) in the banks industry.

NasdaqCM:GLBZ PE PEG Gauge January 18th 19

Glen Burnie Bancorp’s P/E tells us that market participants think the company will perform better than its industry peers, going forward. Shareholders are clearly optimistic, but the future is always uncertain. So further research is always essential. I often monitor director buying and selling.

A Limitation: P/E Ratios Ignore Debt and Cash In The Bank

The ‘Price’ in P/E reflects the market capitalization of the company. That means it doesn’t take debt or cash into account. Hypothetically, a company could reduce its future P/E ratio by spending its cash (or taking on debt) to achieve higher earnings.

Such expenditure might be good or bad, in the long term, but the point here is that the balance sheet is not reflected by this ratio.

Glen Burnie Bancorp’s Balance Sheet

Net debt totals 81% of Glen Burnie Bancorp’s market cap. If you want to compare its P/E ratio to other companies, you should absolutely keep in mind it has significant borrowings.

The Bottom Line On Glen Burnie Bancorp’s P/E Ratio

Glen Burnie Bancorp trades on a P/E ratio of 26.5, which is above the US market average of 16.8. With significant debt and no EPS growth last year, shareholders are betting on an improvement in earnings from the company.

Investors should be looking to buy stocks that the market is wrong about. If the reality for a company is better than it expects, you can make money by buying and holding for the long term. We don’t have analyst forecasts, but you might want to assess this data-rich visualization of earnings, revenue and cash flow.

But note: Glen Burnie Bancorp may not be the best stock to buy. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies with strong recent earnings growth (and a P/E ratio below 20).

To help readers see past 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. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com.