# Dusk Group Limited (ASX:DSK) Is Going Strong But Fundamentals Appear To Be Mixed : Is There A Clear Direction For The Stock?

Simply Wall St · 08/30 20:14

Dusk Group (ASX:DSK) has had a great run on the share market with its stock up by a significant 62% over the last three months. But the company's key financial indicators appear to be differing across the board and that makes us question whether or not the company's current share price momentum can be maintained. Particularly, we will be paying attention to Dusk Group's ROE today.

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 Dusk Group

## How To Calculate Return On Equity?

The formula for ROE is:

Return on Equity = Net Profit (from continuing operations) ÷ Shareholders' Equity

So, based on the above formula, the ROE for Dusk Group is:

11% = AU\$4.3m ÷ AU\$37m (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2024).

The 'return' is the income the business earned over the last year. One way to conceptualize this is that for each A\$1 of shareholders' capital it has, the company made A\$0.11 in profit.

## What Has ROE Got To Do With Earnings Growth?

We have already established that ROE serves as an efficient profit-generating gauge for a company's future earnings. Based on how much of its profits the company chooses to reinvest or "retain", we are then able to evaluate a company's future ability to generate profits. Assuming all else is equal, companies that have both a higher return on equity and higher profit retention are usually the ones that have a higher growth rate when compared to companies that don't have the same features.

## Dusk Group's Earnings Growth And 11% ROE

To start with, Dusk Group's ROE looks acceptable. Be that as it may, the company's ROE is still quite lower than the industry average of 16%. Moreover, Dusk Group's net income shrunk at a rate of 9.5%over the past five years. Bear in mind, the company does have a high ROE. It is just that the industry ROE is higher. Therefore, the shrinking earnings could be the result of other factors. Such as, the company pays out a huge portion of its earnings as dividends, or is faced with competitive pressures.

That being said, we compared Dusk Group's performance with the industry and were concerned when we found that while the company has shrunk its earnings, the industry has grown its earnings at a rate of 16% in the same 5-year period.

Earnings growth is a huge factor in stock valuation. What investors need to determine next is if the expected earnings growth, or the lack of it, is already built into the share price. Doing so will help them establish if the stock's future looks promising or ominous. If you're wondering about Dusk Group's's valuation, check out this gauge of its price-to-earnings ratio, as compared to its industry.

## Is Dusk Group Efficiently Re-investing Its Profits?

Dusk Group has a high three-year median payout ratio of 64% (that is, it is retaining 36% of its profits). This suggests that the company is paying most of its profits as dividends to its shareholders. This goes some way in explaining why its earnings have been shrinking. With only very little left to reinvest into the business, growth in earnings is far from likely. Our risks dashboard should have the 4 risks we have identified for Dusk Group.

Moreover, Dusk Group has been paying dividends for four years, which is a considerable amount of time, suggesting that management must have perceived that the shareholders prefer consistent dividends even though earnings have been shrinking. Based on the latest analysts' estimates, we found that the company's future payout ratio over the next three years is expected to hold steady at 60%.

## Summary

On the whole, we feel that the performance shown by Dusk Group can be open to many interpretations. Primarily, we are disappointed to see a lack of growth in earnings even in spite of a moderate ROE. Bear in mind, the company reinvests a small portion of its profits, which explains the lack of growth. Having said that, looking at current analyst estimates, we found that the company's earnings growth rate is expected to see a huge improvement. To know more about the latest analysts predictions for the company, check out this visualization of analyst forecasts for the company.