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Some Investors May Be Worried About Surgery Partners' (NASDAQ:SGRY) Returns On Capital

·3-min read

Did you know there are some financial metrics that can provide clues of a potential multi-bagger? 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. Put simply, these types of businesses are compounding machines, meaning they are continually reinvesting their earnings at ever-higher rates of return. However, after briefly looking over the numbers, we don't think Surgery Partners (NASDAQ:SGRY) has the makings of a multi-bagger going forward, but let's have a look at why that may be.

What Is Return On Capital Employed (ROCE)?

For those who don't know, ROCE is a measure of a company's yearly pre-tax profit (its return), relative to the capital employed in the business. The formula for this calculation on Surgery Partners is:

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

0.056 = US$323m ÷ (US$6.3b - US$542m) (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2022).

So, Surgery Partners has an ROCE of 5.6%. Ultimately, that's a low return and it under-performs the Healthcare industry average of 10%.

View our latest analysis for Surgery Partners

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In the above chart we have measured Surgery Partners' prior ROCE against its prior performance, but the future is arguably more important. If you'd like to see what analysts are forecasting going forward, you should check out our free report for Surgery Partners.

So How Is Surgery Partners' ROCE Trending?

In terms of Surgery Partners' historical ROCE movements, the trend isn't fantastic. Over the last five years, returns on capital have decreased to 5.6% from 9.8% five years ago. However, given capital employed and revenue have both increased it appears that the business is currently pursuing growth, at the consequence of short term returns. And if the increased capital generates additional returns, the business, and thus shareholders, will benefit in the long run.

In Conclusion...

While returns have fallen for Surgery Partners in recent times, we're encouraged to see that sales are growing and that the business is reinvesting in its operations. And the stock has followed suit returning a meaningful 82% to shareholders over the last five years. So should these growth trends continue, we'd be optimistic on the stock going forward.

If you'd like to know about the risks facing Surgery Partners, we've discovered 2 warning signs that you should be aware of.

If you want to search for solid companies with great earnings, check out this free list of companies with good balance sheets and impressive returns on equity.

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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