I compute the return on invested capital at the start of for each company in my public company sample of . Aswath Damodaran said. January 28, at am by Aswath Damodaran . for these companies to estimate excess returns (ROIC – Cost of Capital) for each firm. Return on Capital or Return on Invested Capital (ROIC) is something I . Aswath Damodaran is an NYU professor and the guru of valuation.

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As to which of these various measures of profitability you use, the answer depends on the following:. Profitability, Excess Returns and Governance. The automobile and shipbuilding businesses have been bad businesses,almost every year that I have looked at it for the last decade.

The Hottest Metric in Finance: Notwithstanding these concerns, analysts often compute a return on invested capital ROIC as a measure of investment return earned by a company:. I wasn’t lucky enough to take his class when I was at NYU but I have watched many Youtube videos of his classes all of which he records and shares online.

Musings on Markets: January Data Update 7: Profitability, Excess Returns and Governance

This post has extended way beyond what I initially planned, but the excess returns across companies are such a good window into so many of the phenomena that are convulsing companies today that I could not resist.

I underestimated Alphabet’s offices all over the world and their massive investment in data centers referred to as information technology assets on their BS. Regional and Sector Differences If you accept my numbers, a third of all companies are destroying value, a third are running in place and a damoxaran are creating value, but are there differences across countries? The electronics business is one example, where margins have collapsed and returns have followed The telecommunications business, was for long a solid business, where big infrastructure investments were funded with debt, but the companies whether they be phone or cable were able to use their quasi or regulated monopoly status to pass those costs on to their customers, but it has now slipped into the bad business column, as technology has danodaran its monopoly powers.

I thought it was a valuable instructional resource on ROIC. Posted by Aswath Damodaran at 1: Roiic is in pursuit of that variation that I decided to look at excess returns, broken down on these dimensions. There is a litany of writing about ROIC by people far smarter on the topic than myself.


Margins and ROC

Notwithstanding claims to the contrary, there are many companies where managers left to their own devices, will find ways to spend investor money badly and need to be held to account. We would want to analyze the ROIC for both companies over multiple years to understand how sustainable it is and how susceptible it is to a cyclical downturn Drivers: With financial service firms, where the excess returns are better measured by looking at the difference between ROE and cost of equity, the excess returns remain positive for the moment, but the future hold sthe terrifying prospect of unbridled competition from the fin tech startups.

Numbers don’t lie, or do they?

While you will see both in user, there are two key factors that should color which one you focus on and how much to trust that number. It is true that my accounting returns are based upon one year’s earnings, and that even good companies have bad years, and using a normalized return on capital where I use dmaodaran average return on capital earned over 10 years does brighten the picture a bit: Note that the traditional definition of Net Working Capital usually excludes cash from the Current Assets but I include it in this case because we then subtract out the excess cash.

Good businesses generate high returns on capital and they do so with consistency. Never Miss A Story! For investors, looking at this listing of good and bad businesses inI would offer a warning about extrapolating to investing choices. I broke global companies down into deciles, based upon market capitalization, to see if I could eke out some answers:. For a business to be a success, it is not just enough that it makes money but that xamodaran makes enough money to compensate the owners for the capital that they have invested in it, the risk that they are exposed to damodxran the time that they have to wait to get their money back.

In general, especially when comparing large numbers of stocks across many sectors, the capital comparison is a more reliable one than the equity comparison. The first step towards measuring investment success is measuring the return that companies make on their investments. Download spreadsheet with all margin data.

Aswath Damodaran is an NYU professor and the guru of valuation. The distribution across all firms is reported below:. One of the two regions of the world where companies earn more than their cost of capital is India, which the cynics will attribute to accounting game playing, but may also reflect the protection from competition that some sectors in India, especially retail and financial services, have been offered from foreign competition.


I use the corporate life cycle as a vehicle for talking about transitions in companies, from the right type of CEO for a firm to which pricing metric to use. A few things I would say here:.

The public market place globally, at least at the start ofhas more value destroyers than value creators, at least based upon trailing returns on capital. Businesses that can generate higher returns on capital can invest less in capital expenditures and thus generate more free cash flow to distribute to shareholders. January Data Update 3: If you are wary because the returns computed used the damodarah recent 12 months of data, you are right be.

Generally, you would expect companies in markets that are more protected from competition either domestic or global to do better than companies in markets where competition is fierce. Even in this more optimistic picture, firms It is also the metric that lends itself well to converting stories to numbers, another obsession of mine.

Aswath Damodaran – January 2018 Data Update 7: Growth and Value

After all, excess returns can vary across parts of the world, different business or company size. The Amazon phenomenon, which has so thoroughly upended the retail business, seems to be coming to other businesses as well. The simplest and most direct measures of profitability remain profit margins, roc profits scaled to revenues for most firms. That damodaean, there are variants of profit margins that can be computed depending on the earnings measure used:. Finally, if you are doing this for an individual company, you can use much more finesse in your computation and use this spreadsheet to make your own adjustments to the number.

One of the posts emanated from a conversation I had with the fine gentlemen at Dajodaran Capital. I compute the return on invested capital at the start of for each company in my public company sample of 42, firms, using the following judgments in my estimation:.

Using numbers, 22, companies, representing Specifically, as I have in prior years, I will examine whether the returns generated by firms are higher than, roughly equal to or lower than their costs of capital, and in the process, answer one on the fundamental questions in investing.