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Markel Corporation's (NYSE:MKL) Stock Has Fared Decently: Is the Market Following Strong Financials?

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Markel’s (NYSE:MKL) stock is up by 4.1% over the past month. Given that the market rewards strong financials in the long-term, we wonder if that is the case in this instance. In this article, we decided to focus on Markel’s ROE.

Return on equity or ROE is an important factor to be considered by a shareholder because it tells them how effectively their capital is being reinvested. In other words, it is a profitability ratio which measures the rate of return on the capital provided by the company’s shareholders.

View our latest analysis for Markel

How Is ROE Calculated?

ROE can be calculated by using the formula:

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

So, based on the above formula, the ROE for Markel is:

17% = US$2.4b ÷ US$14b (Based on the trailing twelve months to September 2021).

The ‘return’ is the amount earned after tax over the last twelve months. That means that for every $1 worth of shareholders’ equity, the company generated $0.17 in profit.

What Is The Relationship Between ROE And Earnings Growth?

So far, we’ve learned that ROE is a measure of a company’s profitability. 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. Generally speaking, other things being equal, firms with a high return on equity and profit retention, have a higher growth rate than firms that don’t share these attributes.

A Side By Side comparison of Markel’s Earnings Growth And 17% ROE

To begin with, Markel seems to have a respectable ROE. On comparing with the average industry ROE of 11% the company’s ROE looks pretty remarkable. Probably as a result of this, Markel was able to see an impressive net income growth of 41% over the last five years. We reckon that there could also be other factors at play here. For example, it is possible that the company’s management has made some good strategic decisions, or that the company has a low payout ratio.

As a next step, we compared Markel’s net income growth with the industry, and pleasingly, we found that the growth seen by the company is higher than the average industry growth of 12%.

past-earnings-growth

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. By doing so, they will have an idea if the stock is headed into clear blue waters or if swampy waters await. What is MKL worth today? The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether MKL is currently mispriced by the market.

Is Markel Efficiently Re-investing Its Profits?

Given that Markel doesn’t pay any dividend to its shareholders, we infer that the company has been reinvesting all of its profits to grow its business.

Conclusion

In total, we are pretty happy with Markel’s performance. Specifically, we like that the company is reinvesting a huge chunk of its profits at a high rate of return. This of course has caused the company to see substantial growth in its earnings. That being so, according to the latest industry analyst forecasts, the company’s earnings are expected to shrink in the future. To know more about the latest analysts predictions for the company, check out this visualization of analyst forecasts for the company.

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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.