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Universal Display (NASDAQ:OLED) Hasn't Managed To Accelerate Its Returns

Did you know there are some financial metrics that can provide clues of a potential multi-bagger? Firstly, we'll want to see a proven return on capital employed (ROCE) that is increasing, and secondly, an expanding base of capital employed. Ultimately, this demonstrates that it's a business that is reinvesting profits at increasing rates of return. That's why when we briefly looked at Universal Display's (NASDAQ:OLED) ROCE trend, we were pretty happy with what we saw.

Return On Capital Employed (ROCE): What Is It?

For those who don't know, ROCE is a measure of a company's yearly pre-tax profit (its return), relative to the capital employed in the business. To calculate this metric for Universal Display, this is the formula:

Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets - Current Liabilities)

0.17 = US$230m ÷ (US$1.5b - US$155m) (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2022).

Thus, Universal Display has an ROCE of 17%. In absolute terms, that's a pretty normal return, and it's somewhat close to the Semiconductor industry average of 15%.

View our latest analysis for Universal Display


Above you can see how the current ROCE for Universal Display compares to its prior returns on capital, but there's only so much you can tell from the past. If you'd like, you can check out the forecasts from the analysts covering Universal Display here for free.

The Trend Of ROCE

While the returns on capital are good, they haven't moved much. The company has consistently earned 17% for the last five years, and the capital employed within the business has risen 102% in that time. 17% is a pretty standard return, and it provides some comfort knowing that Universal Display has consistently earned this amount. Over long periods of time, returns like these might not be too exciting, but with consistency they can pay off in terms of share price returns.

The Key Takeaway

The main thing to remember is that Universal Display has proven its ability to continually reinvest at respectable rates of return. Yet over the last five years the stock has declined 29%, so the decline might provide an opening. For that reason, savvy investors might want to look further into this company in case it's a prime investment.

Like most companies, Universal Display does come with some risks, and we've found 1 warning sign that you should be aware of.

If you want to search for solid companies with great earnings, check out this free list of companies with good balance sheets and impressive returns on equity.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at)

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.

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