Australia markets closed
• ALL ORDS

8,437.20
+20.20 (+0.24%)

• ASX 200

8,209.50
+17.60 (+0.21%)

• AUD/USD

0.6808
-0.0010 (-0.14%)

• OIL

71.77
-0.18 (-0.25%)

• GOLD

2,645.60
+31.00 (+1.19%)

• Bitcoin AUD

92,284.58
-604.88 (-0.65%)

• XRP AUD

0.86
-0.01 (-1.09%)

• AUD/EUR

0.6099
-0.0001 (-0.01%)

• AUD/NZD

1.0907
-0.0007 (-0.06%)

• NZX 50

12,478.50
-186.50 (-1.47%)

• NASDAQ

19,791.49
-48.34 (-0.24%)

• FTSE

8,229.99
-98.73 (-1.19%)

• Dow Jones

42,063.36
+38.17 (+0.09%)

• DAX

18,720.01
-282.37 (-1.49%)

• Hang Seng

18,258.57
+245.41 (+1.36%)

• NIKKEI 225

37,723.91
+568.58 (+1.53%)

Return on Equity or ROE is a test of how effectively a company is growing its value and managing investors’ money. In other words, it is a profitability ratio which measures the rate of return on the capital provided by the company's shareholders.

Check out our latest analysis for Adeia

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 Adeia is:

46% = US\$138m ÷ US\$301m (Based on the trailing twelve months to December 2022).

The 'return' refers to a company's earnings over the last year. So, this means that for every \$1 of its shareholder's investments, the company generates a profit of \$0.46.

Does Adeia Have A Good ROE?

By comparing a company's ROE with its industry average, we can get a quick measure of how good it is. However, this method is only useful as a rough check, because companies do differ quite a bit within the same industry classification. As is clear from the image below, Adeia has a better ROE than the average (11%) in the Software industry.

That's what we like to see. With that said, a high ROE doesn't always indicate high profitability. Especially when a firm uses high levels of debt to finance its debt which may boost its ROE but the high leverage puts the company at risk. To know the 3 risks we have identified for Adeia visit our risks dashboard for free.

The Importance Of Debt To Return On Equity

Most companies need money -- from somewhere -- to grow their profits. That cash can come from retained earnings, issuing new shares (equity), or debt. In the first and second cases, the ROE will reflect this use of cash for investment in the business. In the latter case, the debt used for growth will improve returns, but won't affect the total equity. That will make the ROE look better than if no debt was used.

Adeia's Debt And Its 46% ROE

It's worth noting the high use of debt by Adeia, leading to its debt to equity ratio of 2.42. Its ROE is pretty impressive but, it would have probably been lower without the use of debt. Debt does bring extra risk, so it's only really worthwhile when a company generates some decent returns from it.

Summary

Return on equity is useful for comparing the quality of different businesses. In our books, the highest quality companies have high return on equity, despite low debt. If two companies have the same ROE, then I would generally prefer the one with less debt.

But ROE is just one piece of a bigger puzzle, since high quality businesses often trade on high multiples of earnings. The rate at which profits are likely to grow, relative to the expectations of profit growth reflected in the current price, must be considered, too. So I think it may be worth checking this free report on analyst forecasts for the company.

Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies.

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.

Join A Paid User Research Session
You’ll receive a US\$30 Amazon Gift card for 1 hour of your time while helping us build better investing tools for the individual investors like yourself. Sign up here