Return on Equity Analysis

See Also:
Financial Ratios
Return on Asset
Required Rate of Return
Return on Invested Capital (ROIC)
Debt to Equity Ratio
Return on Common Equity (ROCE)
What The CEO Wants You to Know How Your Company Really Works

Return on Equity Analysis

Defined also as return on net worth (RONW), return on equity reveals how much profit a company earned in comparison to the money a shareholder has invested.

Return on Equity Explanation

This term is explained as a measure of how well a company uses investment dollars to generate profits. Return on equity is more important to a shareholder than return on investment (ROI) because it tells investors how effectively their capital is being reinvested. Therefore, a company with high return on equity is more successful to generate cash internally. Investors are always looking for companies with high and growing returns on equity. However, not all high ROE companies make good investments. The better benchmark is to compare a company’s return on equity with its industry average. Generally, the higher the ratio, the better a company is.

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Return on Equity Formula

The following return on equity formula forms a simple example for solving ROE problems.

Return on Equity Ratio = Net income ÷ Average shareholders equity

When solving return on equity, equation solutions only form part of the problem. Thus, one must be able to apply the equation to a variety of different and changing scenarios.

Return on Equity Calculation

Average shareholders’ equity, or return on equity, is calculated by adding the shareholders’ equity at the beginning of a period to the shareholders’ equity at period’s end and dividing the result by two. Unfortunately, no simple return on equity calculator can complete the job that a solid understanding of ROE can.

For example, a company has $6,000 in net income, and $20,000 in average shareholders’ equity.

Return on equity: $6,000 / $20,000 =30%

In conclusion, a company that has $0.3 of net income for every dollar that has been invested by shareholder.

Return on Equity Example

Melanie, after seeing success in her corporate career, has left the comfortable life to become an angel investor. She has worked diligently to select companies and their managers, hold these managers accountable to their promises, provide advice and mentoring, and lead her partners to capitalization while minimizing risk. At this stage, Melanie is ready to receive her pay-out. Melanie wants to know her Return on Equity analysis ratio for one of her client companies.

Melanie begins by finding the net income and average shareholder’s equity for the venture. Looking back to her records, Melanie has invested $20,000 in the business. Her net income from it is $6,000 per year. Performing her return on equity analysis yields the following results:

Return on equity: $6,000 / $20,000 =30%

Melanie is happy with her results. Because she was purposeful and started small, she built the experience and confidence to be successful. She can now move on to bigger and better deals.

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return on equity analysis

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return on equity analysis

Resources

For statistical information about industry financial ratios, please go to the following websites: www.bizstats.com and www.valueline.com.

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