Return on equity measures how much in earnings a company generates in four quarters compared to its shareholders' equity, as a percentage. For example, if a company made $1 million in the past year and has shareholders' equity of $10 million, then the ROE is 10%.
In effect, return on equity is a measurement of capital efficiency. It tells investors whether funds invested in the company through retained earnings and issuance of new shares
are getting a favorable return.
The following nine stocks are in the S&P 500 and have a
return on equity of at least 30% for each of the last three
Abbott Labs (ABT
) Colgate Palmolive (CL
)Dell Computer (DELL
) Equifax (EFX
) Kellogg (K
) Lexmark (LXK
) Ralston Purina (RAL
) Tupperware (TUP
) USA Education (SLM
) David Braverman is a senior investment officer with Standard & Poor's