Today we'll evaluate Golden Energy and Resources Limited (SGX:AUE) to determine whether it could have potential as an investment idea. To be precise, we'll consider its Return On Capital Employed (ROCE), as that will inform our view of the quality of the business.
First of all, we'll work out how to calculate ROCE. Then we'll compare its ROCE to similar companies. Last but not least, we'll look at what impact its current liabilities have on its ROCE.
Return On Capital Employed (ROCE): What is it?
ROCE measures the 'return' (pre-tax profit) a company generates from capital employed in its business. Generally speaking a higher ROCE is better. Overall, it is a valuable metric that has its flaws. Author Edwin Whiting says to be careful when comparing the ROCE of different businesses, since 'No two businesses are exactly alike.'
How Do You Calculate Return On Capital Employed?
The formula for calculating the return on capital employed is:
Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets - Current Liabilities)
Or for Golden Energy and Resources:
0.12 = US$94m ÷ (US$1.0b - US$241m) (Based on the trailing twelve months to March 2019.)
So, Golden Energy and Resources has an ROCE of 12%.
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Is Golden Energy and Resources's ROCE Good?
ROCE can be useful when making comparisons, such as between similar companies. It appears that Golden Energy and Resources's ROCE is fairly close to the Oil and Gas industry average of 12%. Independently of how Golden Energy and Resources compares to its industry, its ROCE in absolute terms appears decent, and the company may be worthy of closer investigation.
Our data shows that Golden Energy and Resources currently has an ROCE of 12%, compared to its ROCE of 0.8% 3 years ago. This makes us think the business might be improving.
When considering ROCE, bear in mind that it reflects the past and does not necessarily predict the future. ROCE can be deceptive for cyclical businesses, as returns can look incredible in boom times, and terribly low in downturns. ROCE is only a point-in-time measure. We note Golden Energy and Resources could be considered a cyclical business. What happens in the future is pretty important for investors, so we have prepared a free report on analyst forecasts for Golden Energy and Resources.
Do Golden Energy and Resources's Current Liabilities Skew Its ROCE?
Short term (or current) liabilities, are things like supplier invoices, overdrafts, or tax bills that need to be paid within 12 months. Due to the way the ROCE equation works, having large bills due in the near term can make it look as though a company has less capital employed, and thus a higher ROCE than usual. To check the impact of this, we calculate if a company has high current liabilities relative to its total assets.
Golden Energy and Resources has total liabilities of US$241m and total assets of US$1.0b. As a result, its current liabilities are equal to approximately 24% of its total assets. Current liabilities are minimal, limiting the impact on ROCE.
What We Can Learn From Golden Energy and Resources's ROCE
With that in mind, Golden Energy and Resources's ROCE appears pretty good. Golden Energy and Resources looks strong on this analysis, but there are plenty of other companies that could be a good opportunity . Here is a free list of companies growing earnings rapidly.
If you like to buy stocks alongside management, then you might just love this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).
We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.
If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at firstname.lastname@example.org. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.