It is hard to get excited after looking at GreenTree Hospitality Group's (NYSE:GHG) recent performance, when its stock has declined 34% over the past three months. It is possible that the markets have ignored the company's differing financials and decided to lean-in to the negative sentiment. Fundamentals usually dictate market outcomes so it makes sense to study the company's financials. In this article, we decided to focus on GreenTree Hospitality Group's ROE.
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.
How Is ROE Calculated?
The formula for return on equity is:
Return on Equity = Net Profit (from continuing operations) ÷ Shareholders' Equity
So, based on the above formula, the ROE for GreenTree Hospitality Group is:
10% = CN¥259m ÷ CN¥2.5b (Based on the trailing twelve months to September 2021).
The 'return' is the amount earned after tax over the last twelve months. Another way to think of that is that for every $1 worth of equity, the company was able to earn $0.10 in profit.
What Is The Relationship Between ROE And Earnings Growth?
So far, we've learned that ROE is a measure of a company's profitability. Based on how much of its profits the company chooses to reinvest or "retain", we are then able to evaluate a company's future ability to generate profits. Assuming everything else remains unchanged, the higher the ROE and profit retention, the higher the growth rate of a company compared to companies that don't necessarily bear these characteristics.
GreenTree Hospitality Group's Earnings Growth And 10% ROE
To start with, GreenTree Hospitality Group's ROE looks acceptable. Yet, the fact that the company's ROE is lower than the industry average of 20% does temper our expectations. Further, GreenTree Hospitality Group's five year net income growth of -0.3% is more or less flat. Bear in mind, the company does have a respectable level of ROE. It is just that the industry ROE is higher. Hence there might be some other aspects that are causing the flat growth in earnings. Such as, the company pays out a huge portion of its earnings as dividends, or is faced with competitve pressures.
Next, we compared GreenTree Hospitality Group's performance against the industry and found that the industry shrunk its earnings at 0.9% in the same period, which suggests that the company's earnings have been shrinking at a slower rate than its industry, This does offer shareholders some relief
Earnings growth is an important metric to consider when valuing a stock. It’s important for an investor to know whether the market has priced in the company's expected earnings growth (or decline). Doing so will help them establish if the stock's future looks promising or ominous. Is GreenTree Hospitality Group fairly valued compared to other companies? These 3 valuation measures might help you decide.
Is GreenTree Hospitality Group Using Its Retained Earnings Effectively?
With a high three-year median payout ratio of 53% (implying that the company keeps only 47% of its income) of its business to reinvest into its business), most of GreenTree Hospitality Group's profits are being paid to shareholders, which explains the absence of growth in earnings.
In addition, GreenTree Hospitality Group has been paying dividends over a period of three years suggesting that keeping up dividend payments is way more important to the management even if it comes at the cost of business growth. Upon studying the latest analysts' consensus data, we found that the company's future payout ratio is expected to drop to 8.9% over the next three years. The fact that the company's ROE is expected to rise to 16% over the same period is explained by the drop in the payout ratio.
Overall, we have mixed feelings about GreenTree Hospitality Group. Primarily, we are disappointed to see a lack of growth in earnings even in spite of a moderate ROE. Bear in mind, the company reinvests a small portion of its profits, which explains the lack of growth. With that said, we studied the latest analyst forecasts and found that while the company has shrunk its earnings in the past, analysts expect its earnings to grow in the future. 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.
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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.