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To find a multi-bagger stock, what are the underlying trends we should look for in a business? Ideally, a business will show two trends; firstly a growing return on capital employed (ROCE) and secondly, an increasing amount of capital employed. This shows us that it's a compounding machine, able to continually reinvest its earnings back into the business and generate higher returns. So when we looked at the ROCE trend of Champion Iron (ASX:CIA) we really liked what we saw.
Return On Capital Employed (ROCE): What Is It?
For those that aren't sure what ROCE is, it measures the amount of pre-tax profits a company can generate from the capital employed in its business. To calculate this metric for Champion Iron, this is the formula:
Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets - Current Liabilities)
0.31 = CA$556m ÷ (CA$2.0b - CA$223m) (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2022).
Therefore, Champion Iron has an ROCE of 31%. In absolute terms that's a great return and it's even better than the Metals and Mining industry average of 8.8%.
In the above chart we have measured Champion Iron's prior ROCE against its prior performance, but the future is arguably more important. If you'd like to see what analysts are forecasting going forward, you should check out our free report for Champion Iron.
What Can We Tell From Champion Iron's ROCE Trend?
We're delighted to see that Champion Iron is reaping rewards from its investments and is now generating some pre-tax profits. About five years ago the company was generating losses but things have turned around because it's now earning 31% on its capital. And unsurprisingly, like most companies trying to break into the black, Champion Iron is utilizing 1,023% more capital than it was five years ago. This can indicate that there's plenty of opportunities to invest capital internally and at ever higher rates, both common traits of a multi-bagger.
The Bottom Line
To the delight of most shareholders, Champion Iron has now broken into profitability. Since the stock has returned a staggering 400% to shareholders over the last five years, it looks like investors are recognizing these changes. Therefore, we think it would be worth your time to check if these trends are going to continue.
Champion Iron does have some risks, we noticed 4 warning signs (and 2 which are potentially serious) we think you should know about.
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.
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.
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