Should we be cautious about International Game Technology PLC’s (NYSE:IGT) 13% ROE?

While some investors are already familiar with financial metrics (hat trick), this article is for those who want to learn more about return on equity (ROE) and why it matters. Learning by doing, we will look at ROE to better understand International Game Technology PLC (NYSE:IGT).

Return on equity or ROE is an important factor for a shareholder to consider as it tells them how much of their capital is being reinvested. In other words, it is a profitability ratio that measures the rate of return on capital contributed by the company’s shareholders.

Check out our latest analysis for International Game Technology

How to calculate return on equity?

the return on equity formula East:

Return on equity = Net income (from continuing operations) ÷ Equity

So, based on the formula above, the ROE for International Game Technology is:

13% = $255 million ÷ $2.0 billion (based on trailing 12 months to December 2021).

“Yield” is the income the business has earned over the past year. This therefore means that for every $1 of investment by its shareholder, the company generates a profit of $0.13.

Does international gaming technology have a good return on equity?

By comparing a company’s ROE with the average for its industry, we can get a quick measure of its quality. It is important to note that this measure is far from perfect, as companies differ significantly within the same industry classification. As shown in the graph below, International Game Technology has an ROE below the average (20%) of the hospitality industry classification.

NYSE: IGT Return on Equity April 5, 2022

Unfortunately, this is suboptimal. However, a low ROE is not always bad. If the company’s debt levels are moderate to low, there is always a chance that returns can be enhanced through the use of leverage. A highly leveraged company with a low ROE is a whole other story and a risky investment on our books. Our risk dashboard should have the 2 risks we identified for International Game Technology.

Why You Should Consider Debt When Looking at ROE

Most businesses need money – from somewhere – to increase their profits. The money for the investment can come from the previous year’s earnings (retained earnings), from issuing new shares or from borrowing. In the first two cases, the ROE will capture this use of capital to grow. In the latter case, the debt necessary for growth will boost returns, but will not impact equity. So using debt can improve ROE, but with the added risk of stormy weather, metaphorically speaking.

Combine International Game Technology’s debt and its 13% return on equity

It seems that International Game Technology is relying heavily on debt to improve its returns, as its debt-to-equity ratio is an alarming 3.31. His ROE is decent, but once I consider all the debt, I’m not really impressed.

Conclusion

Return on equity is a way to compare the business quality of different companies. In our books, the highest quality companies have a high return on equity, despite low leverage. All things being equal, a higher ROE is better.

But ROE is only one piece of a larger puzzle, as high-quality companies often trade on high earnings multiples. Earnings growth rates, relative to expectations reflected in the share price, are particularly important to consider. You might want to take a look at this data-rich interactive chart of the company’s forecast.

But note: International Game Technology may not be the best stock to buy. So take a look at this free list of interesting companies with high ROE and low debt.

This Simply Wall St article is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It is not a recommendation to buy or sell stocks and does not take into account your objectives or financial situation. Our goal is to bring you targeted long-term analysis based on fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not take into account the latest announcements from price-sensitive companies or qualitative materials. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned.