Central Garden & Pet Company's (NASDAQ:CENT) Stock's On An Uptrend: Are Strong Financials Guiding The Market?

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Central Garden & Pet (NASDAQ:CENT) has had a great run on the share market with its stock up by a significant 15% over the last three months. Given that the market rewards strong financials in the long-term, we wonder if that is the case in this instance. Particularly, we will be paying attention to Central Garden & Pet’s ROE today.

Return on equity or ROE is a key measure used to assess how efficiently a company’s management is utilizing the company’s capital. In other words, it is a profitability ratio which measures the rate of return on the capital provided by the company’s shareholders.

See our latest analysis for Central Garden & Pet

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 Central Garden & Pet is:

10% = US$110m ÷ US$1.1b (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2020).

The ‘return’ is the income the business earned over the last year. Another way to think of that is that for every $1 worth of equity, the company was able to earn $0.10 in profit.

Why Is ROE Important For Earnings Growth?

So far, we’ve learned that ROE is a measure of a company’s profitability. We now need to evaluate how much profit the company reinvests or “retains” for future growth which then gives us an idea about the growth potential of the company. Generally speaking, other things being equal, firms with a high return on equity and profit retention, have a higher growth rate than firms that don’t share these attributes.

Central Garden & Pet’s Earnings Growth And 10% ROE

At first glance, Central Garden & Pet seems to have a decent ROE. Yet, the fact that the company’s ROE is lower than the industry average of 22% does temper our expectations. Still, we can see that Central Garden & Pet has seen a remarkable net income growth of 21% over the past five years. Therefore, there could be other causes 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. Bear in mind, the company does have a respectable ROE. It is just that the industry ROE is higher. So this certainly also provides some context to the high earnings growth seen by the company.

As a next step, we compared Central Garden & Pet’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 6.4%.

past-earnings-growth

Earnings growth is a huge factor in stock valuation. 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. One good indicator of expected earnings growth is the P/E ratio which determines the price the market is willing to pay for a stock based on its earnings prospects. So, you may want to check if Central Garden & Pet is trading on a high P/E or a low P/E, relative to its industry.

Is Central Garden & Pet Using Its Retained Earnings Effectively?

Conclusion

On the whole, we feel that Central Garden & Pet’s performance has been quite good. Particularly, we like that the company is reinvesting heavily into its business at a moderate rate of return. Unsurprisingly, this has led to an impressive earnings growth. 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.

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