ROIC or Return on Invested Capital of Home Depot shows an upward trend and currently stands at 25.89%. What does this mean for the company and how it impacts the decision-making process of the investors?
In this article, we will go in detail and find out why Return on Invested Capital is one of the most significant ratios you need to compute if you want to get a clear picture of how a firm is doing during the year.
- What is Return on Capital Invested or ROIC?
- Return on Invested Capital ROIC Formula
- Interpretation of Return on Capital
- Return on Invested Capital Example
- Return on Invested Capital Calculation for Infosys
- Why Home Depot’s Return on Invested Capital Ratio is Increasing?
- Industry wise Return on Invested Capital
- Limitations of ROIC
- In the final analysis
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What is Return on Capital Invested (ROIC)?
Return on Capital Invested Capital (ROIC) is most precisely a profitability ratio. This ratio helps one understand how the firm is using its invested capital i.e. equity and debt to generate profit at the end of the day.
The reason this ratio is so very important for investors before investment is because this ratio gives them an idea about which company to invest into. Because the percentage of profits generated from the invested capital is a direct ratio of how good a company is doing in terms of transmuting its capital into income.
While calculating this ratio, one thing you need to remember is that whether you are taking the core income of the business (i.e. most of the times “net income” of the firm) as a measuring grid. The business can generate incomes from other sources, but if it’s not from their core operations, it shouldn’t be taken into account.
Also, have a look at Ratio analysis Guide
Return on Invested Capital (ROIC) Formula
In simple terms, the formula for Return on Invested Capital ratio is as follows –
ROIC Formula = (Net Income – Dividend) / (Debt + Equity)
Let’s take each item from the equation and explain in a brief manner what they are.
As a business or as an investor, if you want to calculate this ratio, the first thing you need to take into account is Net Income. This Net Income should be coming from the main operations of business. That means “Gains from foreign currency transactions” or Gains from other currency transactions” wouldn’t be included in Net Income.
If you find that there are too many incomes from other sources, calculate the Net Operating Profit after Tax (NOPAT). You won’t find NOPAT in the financial statements, but you can calculate it by following this simple formula –
NOPAT Formula = Operating Income before Tax * (1 – Tax)
Now how would you get the figure of Operating Income? To find out operating income, you need to look into the income statement and would find out the operating profit or operating income. Let’s understand this with an ROIC example –
In US $ | |
Gross Revenue | 50,00,000 |
(-) Direct Costs | (12,00,000) |
Gross Margin (A) | 38,00,000 |
Rent | 700,000 |
(+) General & Administration Expenses | 650,000 |
Total Expenses (B) | 13,50,000 |
Operating Income before tax [(A) – (B)] | 24,50,000 |
- To calculate NOPAT, all you need to do is to deduct the tax proportion from the Operating Income.
- In the case of Dividend, if you have paid any dividend during the year, you need to deduct that from Net Income.
- Debt is what the firm has borrowed from a financial institution or banks and equity is what the firm has sourced from equity shareholders.
Interpretation of Return on Invested Capital ratio
As from the explanation, you may have understood that Return on Capital is not an easy ratio to calculate. But irrespective of all these complexities, if you can come up with Return on Capital, it would help a great deal in deciding how the company is doing. Here’s why –
- It includes most of the things into account while calculating the ratio. You are taking into account net income or NOPAT and also how much capital the business has invested. So it produces the right percentage of profit at the end of the year.
- This ratio emphasizes more on the income from operations and doesn’t always include other income. That means it’s the purest form of calculation to ascertain the profit percentage.
Return on Invested Capital Example
Let’s understand in a practical manner. We will take a hypothetical case and then will calculated ROIC ratio using Return on Invested Capital formula.
In US $ | |
Net Income | 300,000 |
Shareholders’ Equity | 500,000 |
Debt | 10,00,000 |
Shareholders’ Equity | 500,000 |
Debt | 10,00,000 |
Invested Capital | 15,00,000 |
Net Income | 300,000 |
(-) Dividend | – |
Invested Capital | 15,00,000 |
Return on Capital | 20% |
In this case, we took a simple Return on Invested Capital example to illustrate the Return on Invested Capital Calculation. And in this case, ROIC is commendable. If you find the ROIC of a company more than 20% for last few years, you may think about investing into the company, but make sure that you take into account every figure and detail while calculating ROIC ratio.
ROIC Calculation for Infosys
As Return on Capital is very complex to understand, we take an ROIC example of Infosys (IT Services firm).
We will look at the income statement and balance sheet of Infosys for the year end 2014 and 2015 and then will calculate ROIC ratio for both the years.
Let’s have a look at the Balance Sheet first.
Balance Sheet as at 31^{st} March, 2014 & 2015 –
source: Infosys Annual Report
Statement for profit and loss for the year ended 31^{st} March, 2014 & 2015 –
source: Infosys Annual Report
Now, let’s calculate the return on invested capital ratio using the ROIC formula that we have discussed before.
In Rupees Crores | 31^{st} March, 2015 | 31^{st} March, 2014 |
Profit for the year (A) | 12164 | 10194 |
Capital Invested (B) | 48068 | 42092 |
Return on Capital | 0.25 | 0.24 |
Return on Capital (in percentages) | 25% | 24% |
- As there are negligible amount of other income, we took the whole income into account while coming up with the profit of the year. And also there is no dividend mentioned, so we didn’t deduct the amount from the profit.
- As Infosys is a fully debt free company, only shareholders’ funds are considered to be capital invested.
If we come to interpret the Return on Invested Capital ratio for both of the years, we could easily say that Infosys is a company which has been successful in generating a great Return on Capital for both of the years. So from the point of view of the investors, Infosys may seem a good place to invest their money into.
Why Home Depot’s Return on Invested Capital is Increasing?
This is an interesting ROIC Example. Home Depot is a retail supplier of home improvement tools, construction products, and services. It operates in US, Canada and Mexico.
When we look at Home Depot’s Return on Invested Capital ratio, we see Return on Capital of Home Depot has climbed up steeply since 2010 and is currently at 25.89%.
What are the reasons for such an increase in Return on Invested Capital ratio?
source: ycharts
Let us investigate and find out the reasons.
Just to refresh, Return on Invested Capital formula = (Net Income – Dividend)/ (Debt + equity)
Return on Invested Capital ratio can increases either because of increase in 1) Net Income 2) decrease in Equity 3) Decrease in Debt
# 1 – EVALUATING HOME DEPOT’S Net Income
Home Depot increased its Net Income from $2.26 billion to $7.00 billion, an increase of approximately 210% in 6 years. This significantly increased the numerator and is one of the most important contributors to the uptick in ROIC ratio
source: ycharts
#2 – EVALUATING HOME DEPOT’S SHAREHOLDER’S EQUITY
We note that shareholder’s equity of Home Depot has decreased by 65% in the last 4 years. Declining shareholder’s equity has contributed to the decrease in the denominator of ROIC ratio. With this, we note that the decrease in Shareholder’s Equity has also contributed meaningfully to the increase in Home Depot Return on Invested Capital ratio
source: ycharts
If we look at Home Depot’s Shareholder’s Equity section, we find the possible reasons for such a decrease.
- Accumulated Other Comprehensive Loss has resulted in lowering of Shareholder’s equity in both 2015 and 2016.
- Accelerated Buybacks were the second and most important reason for the decrease in Shareholder’s equity in 2015 and 2016.
#3 – Evaluating Home Depot Debt
Let us now look at Home Depot’s Debt. We note that Home Depot debt increased from 9.682 billion in 2010 to $21.32 billion in 2016. This 120% increase in debt resulted in lowering of the ROIC ratio.
source: ycharts
Summary –
We note that Home Depot’s Return on Invested Capital ratio increased from 12.96% in 2010 to 25.89% in 2016 because of the following –
- Net Income increased by 210% in the period from 2010-2016 (major contributor to the numerator)
- Shareholder Equity decreased by 65% in the corresponding period. (major contributor to the denominator)
- Overall increase in ROIC ratio because of the two factors above (1 and 2) was offset by the 120% increase in debt in the corresponding period.
Industry wise ROIC Ratios
What is the right benchmark for a great Return on Invested Capital ratio ? The answer is it depends!
It depends on the kind of industry it operates into. We can’t compare Amazon’s Return on Invested Capital ratio with that of Home Depot as they operate in a totally different sector.
Below we have documented some industry Return on Invested Capital ratio that will help you with the ballpark figures of what seems to be a good ROIC ratio.
Two important points to note here –
- Capital Intensive Sectors like Telecom, Automobile, Oil & Gas, Utilities, Departmental Stores tend to generate low ROIC
- Pharmaceutical, Internet Companies, Software Application companies tend to generate higher Return on Invested Capital ratio
Let us have a look at some of the top companies in some important sectors. Please note that the source of Industry Return on Invested Capital ratio is ycharts.
Departmental Stores Industry ROIC Ratio
Please see below the list of top departmental stores in the US along with ROIC Ratio and Market Capitalization.
S. No | Name | Return on Invested Capital ratio (Annual) | Market Cap |
1 | Macy’s | 8.7% | 9,958.7 |
2 | Cencosud | 3.2% | 8,698.1 |
3 | Nordstrom | 13.0% | 7,689.5 |
4 | Kohl’s | 7.9% | 7,295.4 |
5 | Companhia Brasileira | 1.1% | 4,900.7 |
6 | JC Penney Co | -7.7% | 2,164.3 |
7 | Dillard’s | 9.9% | 1,929.0 |
8 | Sears Holdings | -58.6% | 685.0 |
9 | Sears Hometown and Outlet | -5.6% | 86.3 |
10 | Bon-Ton Stores | -6.2% | 24.4 |
We note the following in the Return on Invested Capital Example of Departmental Store industry.
- We note the following in the Return on Invested Capital Example of Internet and content industry.We note that Nordstorm has a ROIC ratio of 13%, on the other hand Macy’s has a ROIC ratio of 8.7%
- Many companies like Sears Holding, Bon-Ton Stores, JC Penney Co show a negative Return on Invested Capital ratio .
Internet and Content Industry ROIC ratio
Please see below the list of top Internet and Content Industry in the US along with ROIC calculation and Market Capitalization.
Symbol | Name | Return on Invested Capital ratio (Annual) | Market Cap ($ Million) |
1 | Alphabet | 15% | 580,074 |
2 | 20% | 387,402 | |
3 | Baidu | 35% | 63,939 |
4 | Yahoo! | -12% | 43,374 |
5 | JD.com | -25% | 41,933 |
6 | NetEase | 24% | 34,287 |
7 | -8% | 11,303 | |
8 | VeriSign | 60% | 8,546 |
9 | Yandex | 11% | 7,392 |
10 | IAC/InterActive | -1% | 5,996 |
We note the following in the Return on Invested Capital Example of Internet and content industry.
- Internet and Content comapnies are generally not capital intensive like the Utilities or Energy Companies. Therefore, we can see that the Return on Invested Capital ratio of this industry is higher.
- Alphabet, Facebook, and Baidu have an ROIC ratio of 15%, 20%, and 35%, respectively.
- Yahoo, JD.Com, and Twitter, however, have negative Return on Invested Capital
Telecom Industry Return on Invested Capital ratio
Please see below the list of top Telecom Companies in the US along with ROIC calculation and Market Capitalization.
S. No | Name | Return on Invested Capital ratio (Annual) | Market Cap ($ million) |
1 | AT&T | 5% | 249,632 |
2 | China Mobile | 12% | 235,018 |
3 | Verizon Communications | 10% | 197,921 |
4 | NTT DOCOMO | 9% | 88,688 |
5 | Nippon Telegraph | 5% | 87,401 |
6 | Vodafone Group | -4% | 66,370 |
7 | T-Mobile US | 2% | 50,183 |
8 | Telefonica | 1% | 47,861 |
9 | American Tower | 3% | 45,789 |
10 | America Movil | 1% | 42,387 |
We note the following in the ROIC Example of Telecom industry.
- We note that Telecom sector is capital intensive sector and its Return on Invested Capital ratio is on the lower side.
- AT&T, China Mobile, and Verizon have a ROIC ratio of 5%, 12% and 10%, respectively.
- Vodafone Group, on the other hand, have a negative Return on Invested Capital ratio of -4%
Oil & Gas E&P Industry ROIC ratio
Please see below the list of top Oil & Gas E&P companies in US along with Return on Invested Capital Calculation and Market Capitalization.
S. No | Name | Return on Invested Capital ratio (Annual) | Market Cap ($ million) |
1 | ConocoPhillips | -6% | 61,580 |
2 | EOG Resources | -21% | 57,848 |
3 | CNOOC | 4% | 55,617 |
4 | Occidental Petroleum | -2% | 51,499 |
5 | Anadarko Petroleum | -10% | 38,084 |
6 | Pioneer Natural Resources | -4% | 33,442 |
7 | Canadian Natural | -1% | 33,068 |
8 | Devon Energy | -47% | 23,698 |
9 | Apache | -88% | 21,696 |
10 | Concho Resources | 1% | 20,776 |
We note the following in the ROIC Example of Oil & Gas industry.
- We note that Oil & Gas sector is a highly capital intensive sector and has a lower ROIC ratio .
- Slowdown in Oil & Gas sector since 2013 has led to declining profitability and losses in most cases.
- From these top Oil & Gas companies, 8 companies have negative Return on Invested Capital ratio
- Only two companies, namely, CNOOC and Concho resources have positive Return on Invested Capital ratio of 4% and 1%, respectively.
Automobile Industry ROIC ratio
Please see below the list of top Automobile companies in the US along with Return on Invested Capital calculation and Market Capitalization.
S. No | Name | Return on Invested Capital ratio (Annual) | Market Cap ($ million) |
1 | Toyota Motor | 6% | 170,527 |
2 | Honda Motor Co | 2% | 57,907 |
3 | General Motors | 8% | 53,208 |
4 | Ford Motor | 3% | 49,917 |
5 | Tesla | -25% | 45,201 |
6 | Tata Motors | 7% | 25,413 |
7 | Fiat Chrysler Automobiles | 1% | 18,576 |
8 | Ferrari | 10% | 16,239 |
We note the following in the Return on Invested Capital Example of Automobile industry.
- Again, Automobile Sector is highly capital intensive and we note that most companies show lower ROIC ratio .
- Toyota Motors, Honda Motor and General Motors have Return on Invested Capital ratio of 6%, 2% and 8%, respectively.
- Tesla, on the other hand, has a negative Return on Invested Capital ratio of -25%
Utilities ROIC ratio
Please see below the list of top Utilities companies in the US along with ROIC calculation and Market Capitalization.
S. No | Name | Return on Invested Capital ratio (Annual) | Market Cap ($ million) |
1 | National Grid | 6.8% | 47,002 |
2 | Dominion Resources | 4.7% | 46,210 |
3 | Exelon | 1.9% | 46,034 |
4 | Dominion Resources | 4.7% | 31,413 |
5 | Sempra Energy | 5.0% | 26,296 |
6 | Public Service Enterprise | 7.6% | 22,138 |
7 | FirstEnergy | 1.7% | 13,012 |
8 | Entergy | -0.7% | 12,890 |
9 | Huaneng Power | 5.4% | 10,522 |
10 | AES | 2.6% | 7,699 |
We note the following in the Return on Invested Capital Example of Utilities industry.
- As pointed out earlier, Utilities are also capital intensive sector and has lower ROIC ratio .
- National Grid, Dominion Resources, and Exelon has an ROIC ratio of 6.8%, 4.7% and 1.9%, respectively.
- Entergy, on the other hand has a negative ROIC ratio of -0.7%
Limitations of Return on Invested Capital
There are not many limitations of Return on Invested Capital ratio because this is one of the best methods to find out whether the organization is doing well in terms of generating profits through capital invested.
But there are a couple of limitations (better to say disadvantages) of Return on Invested Capital ratio . Here are they –
- ROIC ratio is very complex to calculate. Investors when they need to calculate the return on invested capital ratio , they can approach it from different angle. They can compute the capital invested by deducting the non-interest-bearing-current-liabilities (NIBCLS) from the total assets or just taking into account the short term debt, long term debt and equity. And to calculate the Net Income, there are many approaches they can take. Only thing that needs to be remembered is the core focus of net income is the income from the operations of the business, not other income.
- ROIC ratio is not suitable for people with no finance background. They often wouldn’t understand the intricacies of this ratio until they have the basic knowledge in finance.
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In the final analysis
After discussing everything in detail, we come to the conclusion that ROIC is a great ratio to calculate if you want to know how a firm is doing in a real sense. If Return on Invested Capital ratio can be followed over the years, it would certainly give a clear picture of how a firm is doing. Thus, if as an investor you want to invest your money into a firm, calculate Return on Invested Capital first and then decide whether it’s a good bet for you or not.
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