Why a high ROE is king in many situations
Making an investment in the stock of a company is considered to be a high-risk investment in some cases. However, investors who make use of the financial information that is provided lower their risk of investing in a poor stock. Over the years, the ROE has proved to be a reliable financial metric. It has come under various criticisms, but it has survived because it is a direct measure of the profitability of a company. Sophisticated methods of measuring the profitability of a company such as ROA and DFC have been developed, but ROE remains a leading financial metric. The ROE is very straightforward and centers on the interest of the stakeholders making it a critical metric.
The ROE straightforwardness makes it the single best measure of profitability a company. Every business requires capital, and most large companies use shareholders to get the right amount of capital. Shareholders need to know the return they will get for each of the dollar invested. The return on equity to a large extent can reflect the value of the investments made by shareholders. If the shareholders invest $1 they expect that the value of the company will improve by the $1 and get high returns. The ROE indicates the amount of profit that is generated using the amount of capital that investors invested in the business. As a result, companies that have a high ROE have a good valuation.
A high ROE indicates that the company is utilizing capital in the generation of profits.
The ROE is a popular metric because it can be used to make various comparisons between different companies. An investor cannot wake one day and decide that they will invest in shares of Apple simply because it is performing relatively well. They have to compare the different stock using a combination of the financial ratio in order to invest in the stock that will generate returns. There is a wide range of stock that an investor has to choose from. Investing in stock should not be a gamble, with the wide range of information provided an investor has the ability to compare different stock before making any decision.
The ROE provides an investor with a good method of comparing different companies. Some companies may have received approximately the same amount of investment with others but end up having a high ROE than other companies. Investors should go for such companies because it means that are efficient and utilizing capital to generate revenues. The investor can also compare ROE of large companies, and the best way to make a choice is to go for companies with a high ROE. A high ROE is favorable because it indicates that the investor is likely to get a high return on investment. However, when making comparisons, investors must consider the industry that the company is operating in. In some industries, ROE of 20% may be impressive, but it is not good in other industries. Some industries have a high ROE because they do not require high levels of assets while other industries maintain a low ROE because they have to invest in high infrastructure. When using the ROE to compare different stocks ensure that they are in the same industry.
A high ROE is not just an indication of a profitable company. It further indicates that a company is good at using retained earnings efficiently. Businesses always retain profits which are used as a source of finance. The retained earnings are a good way of generating capital for business. It is an internal source of finance hence it is free from interest. Retained earnings have minimal risks since it does not increase the debt of the company. A high ROE can indicate if a company is using retained earnings to generate revenues. An investor should look at the history of the company. Look at the retained earnings that the company has every year and the ROE in the following year. If the company has been retaining profits and ROE is increasing, it means that the company is generating revenues from the retained earnings. If a company has retained earnings but keeps it in the reserves, the ROE will decline.
Companies with a higher ROE indicate that they can generate cash internally. The investor is looking for a company that will not put capital at risk. A business with a high ROE is more likely to generate cash internally. However, ROE has come under heavy criticism because it does not consider the amount of debt that a company has. A company can simply be getting cash from debt rather than generating it internally. A company with high debt can also have a high rate of return. Debt can sometimes be used to deliver the high ROE. For instance, a company can have an impressive ROE of 20%, but this return was achieved through a debt of $ 10 million.
In such a case the profitability of the company may not be sustainable since the company may be faced with a high risk in the future due to high debt levels. Debts can give a wrong impression of the value of a business and distort the ROE. The ROE has been accused of failing to show a clear picture of the profitability of the company. However, investors have a way of telling what is contributing to the high ROE. Investors who carefully examine financial information can tell if the high ROE is due to debt or the equity invested. To cater for limitation of the ROE the DuPont model has been developed to assist investor to know what is contributing to high ROE. The DuPont model is an improvement of ROE which can indicate what is fueling the high ROE.
Financial metrics are a useful way to check the performance of a business. The ROE is one of the most popular methods of evaluating stock. It is a straightforward measure making it a good metric valuation method. Investors must understand the limitations of ROE which is failing to indicate the amount of debt that contributed to ROE. When using the ROE, they must consider what fueled the high ROE.