To find a multi-bagger stock, what are the underlying trends we should look for in a business? Ideally, a business will show two trends; firstly a growing return on capital employed (ROCE) and secondly, an increasing amount of capital employed. If you see this, it typically means it's a company with a great business model and plenty of profitable reinvestment opportunities. With that in mind, the ROCE of Fortescue Metals Group (ASX:FMG) looks great, so lets see what the trend can tell us.
Return On Capital Employed (ROCE): What Is It?
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. To calculate this metric for Fortescue Metals Group, this is the formula:
Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets - Current Liabilities)
0.35 = US$9.1b ÷ (US$28b - US$2.4b) (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2022).
Therefore, Fortescue Metals Group has an ROCE of 35%. In absolute terms that's a great return and it's even better than the Metals and Mining industry average of 10.0%.
View our latest analysis for Fortescue Metals Group
In the above chart we have measured Fortescue Metals Group's 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 Fortescue Metals Group.
The Trend Of ROCE
We like the trends that we're seeing from Fortescue Metals Group. Over the last five years, returns on capital employed have risen substantially to 35%. The amount of capital employed has increased too, by 53%. The increasing returns on a growing amount of capital is common amongst multi-baggers and that's why we're impressed.
The Key Takeaway
All in all, it's terrific to see that Fortescue Metals Group is reaping the rewards from prior investments and is growing its capital base. And a remarkable 695% total return over the last five years tells us that investors are expecting more good things to come in the future. With that being said, we still think the promising fundamentals mean the company deserves some further due diligence.
One final note, you should learn about the 2 warning signs we've spotted with Fortescue Metals Group (including 1 which makes us a bit uncomfortable) .
If you want to search for more stocks that have been earning high returns, check out this free list of stocks with solid balance sheets that are also earning high returns on equity.
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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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