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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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 the average return on capital earned over 10 years does brighten the picture a bit:. For a business to be a success, it is not just enough that it makes money but that it makes enough money to compensate the owners for the capital that they have invested in it, the risk that they are exposed to and the time that they have to wait to get their money back.

I think that this is one of the most powerful yet underestimated principles across all of investing literature and it makes me think that I should have probably started this post with dampdaran given its importance. As I look, in my next two posts, at how companies set debt ratios and decide how much to pay in dividends, where policy seems to be driven by inertia dqmodaran me-toois, do keep this in mind. Yes, ROIC isn’t perfect and there are some shortcomings including consistency of calculation -you can find about a hundred different ways to calculate it, but there is no perfect metric so it’s the best we’ve got.

In the context of reporting this statistic at damodaraj start of last year, I reported my ROIC caveats in a picture:. 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: Aswath Damodaran is an NYU professor and the guru of valuation.

Link to live map. The sobering note, though, is that as India opens these sheltered businesses up for competition, these excess returns will come under pressure and perhaps dissipate. January Data Update 3: 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.


To the extent that the market is pricing in investment quality into stock prices, there is a very real possibility that the companies in the worst businesses may offer the best investment opportunities, if markets have over reacted to investment performance, and the companies in the best businesses may be the ones to avoid, if the market has pushed up prices too much. If you dakodaran holding a stock for 1 or 2 years, then valuation is critical because the majority of return will be driven by the difference between price paid and intrinsic value.

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

It stands to reason that it is easier to earn excess returns in some businesses than others, mostly because there are barriers to entry.

My end results for dsmodaran capital comparison are summarized in the picture below, where I break my global companies into three broad groups. Base Hit Investing has a wonderful post explaining this very concept in more detail, which I’ll also re-list below. If you look at almost every valuation that I have done on this blog or in my classes, a key input that drives my forecast of earnings in future years is a target margin either operating or net.

Valuation is the other side of the coin.

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. Instead find businesses that generate high returns on capital.

This is a research paper that I randomly came across online. The distribution across all firms is reported below: The Buoyancy of US Equities!

The Hottest Metric in Finance: In general, especially when comparing large numbers of stocks across many sectors, the capital comparison is a more reliable one than the equity comparison. In this post, I will look at the other rioc perhaps more consequential part of the equation, by looking at what companies generate as profits and returns.

ROIC – Formula, Examples, How to Calculate ROIC

For instance, an accounting write off of a past investment will reduce book value of both equity and invested capital and increase your return on capital. 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.

There are several ways to measure Return on Capital, but my preferred method is Return on Invested Capital ROIC which seeks to measure the return to all capital holders debt and equity. Compounders and Cheap Stocks. The excess returns, in deciles six through nine are about as negative as excess returns, in deciles two through five.


I am not surprised, as some might be, by the numbers above. A Taxing Year Ahead? And I’ve made a high level guesstimate of required cash based on what I know about the businesses.

That said, there are variants of profit margins that can be computed depending on the earnings measure used:. Does growth add or destroy value? The profit margins you focus on, to measure success and viability, will also shift as a company moves through the life cycle:. Also, I have not made adjustments to capitalize leases here, which should normally be done for lease heavy business models.

Operating income should oric adjusted for special or non-recurring charges as appropriate.

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

It’s damosaran combination of both technical posts on the calculation of ROIC and philosophical posts on ways to think about it. We need to look at other metrics and also understand the core business and business model. I’ve made some assumptions here and I can’t admodaran with certainty that all of them are perfectly correct.

I thought it was a valuable instructional roicc on ROIC. Putting both calculations side by side helps exemplify the definition and various drivers a little better.

Send me ocassional rojc party offers Yes No. We respect your privacy no spam ever. For those interested in digging a bit deeper into the nether reaches of ROIC, I thought that some of the best writing on the topic was worth sharing here.

Once I have the measures of these returns, I can compare them with the costs of equity and invested capital that I have estimated already for these companies to estimate excess returns ROIC – Cost of Capital for each firm. Note, that this is a comparison biased significantly towards finding good news, since by using a ten-average for the return on invested capital, I am reducing my sample to 14, survivor firms, more likely to be winners than losers.

Subscribe to ValueWalk Newsletter. What is driving the higher or lower ROIC and are the right inputs being used? They may appear expensive in relation to earnings or book roci, but over the long term, businesses and their stocks will reflect their return on capital and the majority of the return on a given investment will be driven by this factor.