Unpleasant Surprises Could Be In Store For Universal Electronics Inc.'s (NASDAQ:UEIC) Shares

Universal Electronics Inc. +2.55% Pre

Universal Electronics Inc.





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It's not a stretch to say that Universal Electronics Inc.'s (NASDAQ:UEIC) price-to-sales (or "P/S") ratio of 0.3x right now seems quite "middle-of-the-road" for companies in the Consumer Durables industry in the United States, where the median P/S ratio is around 0.8x. However, investors might be overlooking a clear opportunity or potential setback if there is no rational basis for the P/S.

See our latest analysis for Universal Electronics

NasdaqGS:UEIC Price to Sales Ratio vs Industry December 29th 2023

What Does Universal Electronics' Recent Performance Look Like?

While the industry has experienced revenue growth lately, Universal Electronics' revenue has gone into reverse gear, which is not great. One possibility is that the P/S ratio is moderate because investors think this poor revenue performance will turn around. You'd really hope so, otherwise you're paying a relatively elevated price for a company with this sort of growth profile.

If you'd like to see what analysts are forecasting going forward, you should check out our free report on Universal Electronics.

What Are Revenue Growth Metrics Telling Us About The P/S?

In order to justify its P/S ratio, Universal Electronics would need to produce growth that's similar to the industry.

Taking a look back first, the company's revenue growth last year wasn't something to get excited about as it posted a disappointing decline of 21%. As a result, revenue from three years ago have also fallen 30% overall. Accordingly, shareholders would have felt downbeat about the medium-term rates of revenue growth.

Turning to the outlook, the next year should bring diminished returns, with revenue decreasing 8.7% as estimated by the three analysts watching the company. With the industry predicted to deliver 0.8% growth, that's a disappointing outcome.

With this information, we find it concerning that Universal Electronics is trading at a fairly similar P/S compared to the industry. It seems most investors are hoping for a turnaround in the company's business prospects, but the analyst cohort is not so confident this will happen. There's a good chance these shareholders are setting themselves up for future disappointment if the P/S falls to levels more in line with the negative growth outlook.

What We Can Learn From Universal Electronics' P/S?

It's argued the price-to-sales ratio is an inferior measure of value within certain industries, but it can be a powerful business sentiment indicator.

It appears that Universal Electronics currently trades on a higher than expected P/S for a company whose revenues are forecast to decline. With this in mind, we don't feel the current P/S is justified as declining revenues are unlikely to support a more positive sentiment for long. If the declining revenues were to materialize in the form of a declining share price, shareholders will be feeling the pinch.

Before you settle on your opinion, we've discovered 1 warning sign for Universal Electronics that you should be aware of.

If companies with solid past earnings growth is up your alley, you may wish to see this free collection of other companies with strong earnings growth and low P/E ratios.

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