Phillips 66's (NYSE:PSX) Stock Is Going Strong: Is the Market Following Fundamentals?

Phillips 66 -0.19%
 Phillips 66 PSX 144.14 -0.19%

Most readers would already be aware that Phillips 66's (NYSE:PSX) stock increased significantly by 22% over the past three months. Since the market usually pay for a company’s long-term fundamentals, we decided to study the company’s key performance indicators to see if they could be influencing the market. Specifically, we decided to study Phillips 66's ROE in this article.

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.

See our latest analysis for Phillips 66

## How Is ROE Calculated?

Return on equity 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 Phillips 66 is:

25% = US\$8.0b ÷ US\$32b (Based on the trailing twelve months to September 2023).

The 'return' is the amount earned after tax over the last twelve months. So, this means that for every \$1 of its shareholder's investments, the company generates a profit of \$0.25.

## What Is The Relationship Between ROE And Earnings Growth?

Thus far, we have learned that ROE measures how efficiently a company is generating its profits. Depending on how much of these profits the company reinvests or "retains", and how effectively it does so, we are then able to assess a company’s earnings growth potential. 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.

## Phillips 66's Earnings Growth And 25% ROE

Firstly, we acknowledge that Phillips 66 has a significantly high ROE. Even when compared to the industry average of 23% the company's ROE is pretty decent. Given the circumstances, the significant 23% net income growth seen by Phillips 66 over the last five years is not surprising.

As a next step, we compared Phillips 66's net income growth with the industry and were disappointed to see that the company's growth is lower than the industry average growth of 33% in the same period.

Earnings growth is a huge factor in stock valuation. The investor should try to establish if the expected growth or decline in earnings, whichever the case may be, is priced in. This then helps them determine if the stock is placed for a bright or bleak future. What is PSX worth today? The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether PSX is currently mispriced by the market.

## Is Phillips 66 Making Efficient Use Of Its Profits?

Phillips 66's three-year median payout ratio to shareholders is 16%, which is quite low. This implies that the company is retaining 84% of its profits. This suggests that the management is reinvesting most of the profits to grow the business as evidenced by the growth seen by the company.

Additionally, Phillips 66 has paid dividends over a period of at least ten years which means that the company is pretty serious about sharing its profits with shareholders. Our latest analyst data shows that the future payout ratio of the company is expected to rise to 35% over the next three years. Consequently, the higher expected payout ratio explains the decline in the company's expected ROE (to 15%) over the same period.

## Summary

In total, we are pretty happy with Phillips 66's performance. Particularly, we like that the company is reinvesting heavily into its business, and at a high rate of return. As a result, the decent growth in its earnings is not surprising. 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.