Risks To Shareholder Returns Are Elevated At These Prices For Saudi Airlines Catering Company (TADAWUL:6004)

CATRION -1.24%





With a price-to-earnings (or "P/E") ratio of 32.4x Saudi Airlines Catering Company (TADAWUL:6004) may be sending bearish signals at the moment, given that almost half of all companies in Saudi Arabia have P/E ratios under 24x and even P/E's lower than 16x are not unusual. Although, it's not wise to just take the P/E at face value as there may be an explanation why it's as high as it is.

With earnings growth that's superior to most other companies of late, Saudi Airlines Catering has been doing relatively well. The P/E is probably high because investors think this strong earnings performance will continue. You'd really hope so, otherwise you're paying a pretty hefty price for no particular reason.

See our latest analysis for Saudi Airlines Catering

SASE:6004 Price to Earnings Ratio vs Industry December 29th 2023
Keen to find out how analysts think Saudi Airlines Catering's future stacks up against the industry? In that case, our free report is a great place to start.

How Is Saudi Airlines Catering's Growth Trending?

There's an inherent assumption that a company should outperform the market for P/E ratios like Saudi Airlines Catering's to be considered reasonable.

Retrospectively, the last year delivered an exceptional 63% gain to the company's bottom line. Although, its longer-term performance hasn't been as strong with three-year EPS growth being relatively non-existent overall. Accordingly, shareholders probably wouldn't have been overly satisfied with the unstable medium-term growth rates.

Looking ahead now, EPS is anticipated to climb by 13% each year during the coming three years according to the five analysts following the company. Meanwhile, the rest of the market is forecast to expand by 16% per year, which is noticeably more attractive.

In light of this, it's alarming that Saudi Airlines Catering's P/E sits above the majority of other companies. Apparently many investors in the company are way more bullish than analysts indicate and aren't willing to let go of their stock at any price. There's a good chance these shareholders are setting themselves up for future disappointment if the P/E falls to levels more in line with the growth outlook.

What We Can Learn From Saudi Airlines Catering's P/E?

While the price-to-earnings ratio shouldn't be the defining factor in whether you buy a stock or not, it's quite a capable barometer of earnings expectations.

We've established that Saudi Airlines Catering currently trades on a much higher than expected P/E since its forecast growth is lower than the wider market. When we see a weak earnings outlook with slower than market growth, we suspect the share price is at risk of declining, sending the high P/E lower. Unless these conditions improve markedly, it's very challenging to accept these prices as being reasonable.

The company's balance sheet is another key area for risk analysis. Take a look at our free balance sheet analysis for Saudi Airlines Catering with six simple checks on some of these key factors.

If these risks are making you reconsider your opinion on Saudi Airlines Catering, explore our interactive list of high quality stocks to get an idea of what else is out there.

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