Declining Stock and Decent Financials: Is The Market Wrong About Quartix Technologies Plc (LON:QTX)?

·4 min read

It is hard to get excited after looking at Quartix Technologies' (LON:QTX) recent performance, when its stock has declined 16% over the past three months. However, the company's fundamentals look pretty decent, and long-term financials are usually aligned with future market price movements. In this article, we decided to focus on Quartix Technologies' ROE.

ROE or return on equity is a useful tool to assess how effectively a company can generate returns on the investment it received from its shareholders. 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 Quartix Technologies

How Do You Calculate Return On Equity?

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 Quartix Technologies is:

27% = UK£4.9m ÷ UK£18m (Based on the trailing twelve months to December 2021).

The 'return' is the yearly profit. That means that for every £1 worth of shareholders' equity, the company generated £0.27 in profit.

Why Is ROE Important For Earnings Growth?

Thus far, we have learned that ROE measures how efficiently a company is generating its profits. 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. 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.

Quartix Technologies' Earnings Growth And 27% ROE

Firstly, we acknowledge that Quartix Technologies has a significantly high ROE. Second, a comparison with the average ROE reported by the industry of 8.7% also doesn't go unnoticed by us. Needless to say, we are quite surprised to see that Quartix Technologies' net income shrunk at a rate of 8.6% over the past five years. So, there might be some other aspects that could explain this. For example, it could be that the company has a high payout ratio or the business has allocated capital poorly, for instance.

However, when we compared Quartix Technologies' growth with the industry we found that while the company's earnings have been shrinking, the industry has seen an earnings growth of 15% in the same period. This is quite worrisome.

past-earnings-growth
past-earnings-growth

Earnings growth is an important metric to consider when valuing a stock. What investors need to determine next is if the expected earnings growth, or the lack of it, is already built into the share price. By doing so, they will have an idea if the stock is headed into clear blue waters or if swampy waters await. Has the market priced in the future outlook for QTX? You can find out in our latest intrinsic value infographic research report.

Is Quartix Technologies Efficiently Re-investing Its Profits?

In spite of a normal three-year median payout ratio of 42% (that is, a retention ratio of 58%), the fact that Quartix Technologies' earnings have shrunk is quite puzzling. So there could be some other explanations in that regard. For instance, the company's business may be deteriorating.

Moreover, Quartix Technologies has been paying dividends for seven years, which is a considerable amount of time, suggesting that management must have perceived that the shareholders prefer consistent dividends even though earnings have been shrinking. Looking at the current analyst consensus data, we can see that the company's future payout ratio is expected to rise to 89% over the next three years. Regardless, the ROE is not expected to change much for the company despite the higher expected payout ratio.

Conclusion

On the whole, we do feel that Quartix Technologies has some positive attributes. However, given the high ROE and high profit retention, we would expect the company to be delivering strong earnings growth, but that isn't the case here. This suggests that there might be some external threat to the business, that's hampering its growth. That being so, the latest industry analyst forecasts show that the analysts are expecting to see a huge improvement in the company's earnings growth rate. To know more about the latest analysts predictions for the company, check out this visualization of analyst forecasts for the company.

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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.

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