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Adbri (ASX:ABC) Will Be Hoping To Turn Its Returns On Capital Around

To find a multi-bagger stock, what are the underlying trends we should look for in a business? Amongst other things, we'll want to see two things; firstly, a growing return on capital employed (ROCE) and secondly, an expansion in the company's amount of capital employed. If you see this, it typically means it's a company with a great business model and plenty of profitable reinvestment opportunities. Having said that, from a first glance at Adbri (ASX:ABC) we aren't jumping out of our chairs at how returns are trending, but let's have a deeper look.

Understanding Return On Capital Employed (ROCE)

For those that aren't sure what ROCE is, it measures the amount of pre-tax profits a company can generate from the capital employed in its business. The formula for this calculation on Adbri is:

Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets - Current Liabilities)

0.039 = AU$93m ÷ (AU$2.7b - AU$267m) (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2023).

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So, Adbri has an ROCE of 3.9%. In absolute terms, that's a low return and it also under-performs the Basic Materials industry average of 5.6%.

Check out our latest analysis for Adbri

roce
roce

In the above chart we have measured Adbri's prior ROCE against its prior performance, but the future is arguably more important. If you're interested, you can view the analysts predictions in our free report on analyst forecasts for the company.

What Can We Tell From Adbri's ROCE Trend?

When we looked at the ROCE trend at Adbri, we didn't gain much confidence. To be more specific, ROCE has fallen from 13% over the last five years. Although, given both revenue and the amount of assets employed in the business have increased, it could suggest the company is investing in growth, and the extra capital has led to a short-term reduction in ROCE. If these investments prove successful, this can bode very well for long term stock performance.

The Key Takeaway

Even though returns on capital have fallen in the short term, we find it promising that revenue and capital employed have both increased for Adbri. However, despite the promising trends, the stock has fallen 59% over the last five years, so there might be an opportunity here for astute investors. As a result, we'd recommend researching this stock further to uncover what other fundamentals of the business can show us.

Adbri does have some risks though, and we've spotted 2 warning signs for Adbri that you might be interested in.

While Adbri isn't earning the highest return, check out this free list of companies that are earning high returns on equity with solid balance sheets.

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.