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Mayfield Childcare Limited's (ASX:MFD) Fundamentals Look Pretty Strong: Could The Market Be Wrong About The Stock?

·4-min read

With its stock down 7.7% over the past month, it is easy to disregard Mayfield Childcare (ASX:MFD). However, stock prices are usually driven by a company’s financials over the long term, which in this case look pretty respectable. Particularly, we will be paying attention to Mayfield Childcare'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. Simply put, it is used to assess the profitability of a company in relation to its equity capital.

View our latest analysis for Mayfield Childcare

How Do You Calculate Return On Equity?

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 Mayfield Childcare is:

3.9% = AU$2.6m ÷ AU$66m (Based on the trailing twelve months to December 2021).

The 'return' is the profit over the last twelve months. One way to conceptualize this is that for each A$1 of shareholders' capital it has, the company made A$0.04 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. Depending on how much of these profits the company reinvests or "retains", and how effectively it does so, we are then able to assess a company’s earnings growth potential. Assuming all else is equal, companies that have both a higher return on equity and higher profit retention are usually the ones that have a higher growth rate when compared to companies that don't have the same features.

A Side By Side comparison of Mayfield Childcare's Earnings Growth And 3.9% ROE

When you first look at it, Mayfield Childcare's ROE doesn't look that attractive. Next, when compared to the average industry ROE of 7.1%, the company's ROE leaves us feeling even less enthusiastic. Mayfield Childcare was still able to see a decent net income growth of 12% over the past five years. We reckon that there could be other factors at play here. Such as - high earnings retention or an efficient management in place.

We then compared Mayfield Childcare's net income growth with the industry and we're pleased to see that the company's growth figure is higher when compared with the industry which has a growth rate of 5.0% in the same period.

past-earnings-growth
past-earnings-growth

The basis for attaching value to a company is, to a great extent, tied to its earnings growth. The investor should try to establish if the expected growth or decline in earnings, whichever the case may be, is priced in. By doing so, they will have an idea if the stock is headed into clear blue waters or if swampy waters await. Is Mayfield Childcare fairly valued compared to other companies? These 3 valuation measures might help you decide.

Is Mayfield Childcare Efficiently Re-investing Its Profits?

While Mayfield Childcare has a three-year median payout ratio of 69% (which means it retains 31% of profits), the company has still seen a fair bit of earnings growth in the past, meaning that its high payout ratio hasn't hampered its ability to grow.

Besides, Mayfield Childcare has been paying dividends over a period of five years. This shows that the company is committed to sharing profits with its shareholders. Existing analyst estimates suggest that the company's future payout ratio is expected to drop to 51% over the next three years. Accordingly, the expected drop in the payout ratio explains the expected increase in the company's ROE to 13%, over the same period.

Conclusion

Overall, we feel that Mayfield Childcare certainly does have some positive factors to consider. While no doubt its earnings growth is pretty substantial, we do feel that the reinvestment rate is pretty low, meaning, the earnings growth number could have been significantly higher had the company been retaining more of its profits. That being so, the latest analyst forecasts show that the company will continue to see an expansion in its earnings. 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.

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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