Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Concentrate On Value Part III - Debt/Equity Ratio
As I wrote in my previous two Post, Ignore the headlines and stick with the facts at hand, not the B.S. that is hyped in the media or the tips you hear at a party. Investing, although not so simple can be enjoyable and profitable if you approach it in the right manor. As mentioned in my previous two posts book value, free cash flow and return on equity are just some of the tools used to finding the right business to invest in. Another tool to help guide you is the debt/equity ratio which is simply liabilities divided by the stock holders equity. A simple example of this would be: Take your homes current market value, say it is $200,000 dollars and lets say you owe the bank $100,000 dollars, your debt-to equity ratio is 1.0 or 100 percent. Lets also take your neighbors home current value of $200,000 dollars and suppose he/she owes $150,000 dollars. The debt/equity ratio is $150,000/$200,000 3.0 or 300 percent. In this formula we are looking for low debt/equity ratio's. The lower the better. However keep in mind that some industry's will have higher figures than others. Also take note that this is how many company's finance their growth,however if the debt/equity ratio gets to be to high this could be a warning sign to get out or stay away altogether. Also let me reemphasize that you should never take just one of these methods all on its own. Choosing a stock using a combination of these methods can yield some profits for the patient investor with an eye for value.