In trying to determine how profitable a company is per asset dollar, we can take a look at the firm’s Return on Assets. Return on assets is calculated by dividing a company’s net income (usually annual income) by its total assets, and is displayed as a percentage. At the time of writing, Sterling Construction Company, Inc. (NasdaqGS:STRL) has 0.054365 ROA. The measure is commonly used to compare the performance of businesses within the same industry, since it is very difficult for someone to obfuscate the cash flow figure. Thus, the ratio is quite a reliable and comparable measure of asset performance across an industry.

Investors often have to decide how aggressive they are going to be in the stock market. Having the mindset of getting rich quick may result in the rapid loss of capital. Of course, there are those who have possibly had luck on their side, but jumping in head first without a plan can be a recipe for disaster. It may be tempting to take a leap with a risky stock. However, high returns in the equity market may come with extensive risk and volatility. Managing that risk in turbulent markets may help keep the average investor above water when things swing the wrong way. Investors may want to assess if they are trading too much or trading the wrong types of stocks. Doing all the research may involve keeping a close tab on technicals, fundamentals, relevant economic data, and earnings reports. Investors may have to find a way to keep the rational side from being consumed by irrational behavior when analyzing the markets.

**Valuation Scores**

Checking in on some valuation rankings, Sterling Construction Company, Inc. (NasdaqGS:STRL) has a Value Composite score of 17. Developed by James O’Shaughnessy, the VC score uses five valuation ratios. These ratios are price to earnings, price to cash flow, EBITDA to EV, price to book value, and price to sales. The VC is displayed as a number between 1 and 100. In general, a company with a score closer to 0 would be seen as undervalued, and a score closer to 100 would indicate an overvalued company. Adding a sixth ratio, shareholder yield, we can view the Value Composite 2 score which is currently sitting at 25.

Sterling Construction Company, Inc. (NasdaqGS:STRL) has a current MF Rank of 2226. Developed by hedge fund manager Joel Greenblatt, the intention of the formula is to spot high quality companies that are trading at an attractive price. The formula uses ROIC and earnings yield ratios to find quality, undervalued stocks. In general, companies with the lowest combined rank may be the higher quality picks.

The price to book ratio or market to book ratio for Sterling Construction Company, Inc. (NasdaqGS:STRL) currently stands at 2.148932. The ratio is calculated by dividing the stock price per share by the book value per share. This ratio is used to determine how the market values the equity. A ratio of under 1 typically indicates that the shares are undervalued. A ratio over 1 indicates that the market is willing to pay more for the shares. There are often many underlying factors that come into play with the Price to Book ratio so all additional metrics should be considered as well.

Trying to project the day to day short-term movements of the stock market may be all but impossible. Stocks have the tendency to make sudden moves on even the slightest bit of news or for apparently no reason at all. The daily trader may be looking to capitalize on swings or momentum, but the long-term investor may be searching for stability and consistency over a sustained period of time. During trading sessions, stock movements can seem like a popularity contest from time to time. Even after careful study, there may be no logical reason for a particular stock move. Riding out the waves of uncertainty may not be easy, but having a full-proof plan for when markets erode may just be the savior. Having the patience to wait out abnormal moves may help evade the mistake of letting go too soon out of panic.

Ever wonder how investors predict positive share price momentum? The Cross SMA 50/200, also known as the “Golden Cross” is the fifty day moving average divided by the two hundred day moving average. The SMA 50/200 for Sterling Construction Company, Inc. (NasdaqGS:STRL) is currently 1.01896. If the Golden Cross is greater than 1, then the 50 day moving average is above the 200 day moving average – indicating a positive share price momentum. If the Golden Cross is less than 1, then the 50 day moving average is below the 200 day moving average, indicating that the price might drop.

The Leverage Ratio of Sterling Construction Company, Inc. (NasdaqGS:STRL) is 0.173419. Leverage ratio is the total debt of a company divided by total assets of the current and past year divided by two. Companies take on debt to finance their day to day operations. The leverage ratio can measure how much of a company’s capital comes from debt. With this ratio, investors can better estimate how well a company will be able to pay their long and short term financial obligations.

**Volatility**

Stock volatility is a percentage that indicates whether a stock is a desirable purchase. Investors look at the Volatility 12m to determine if a company has a low volatility percentage or not over the course of a year. The Volatility 12m of Sterling Construction Company, Inc. (NasdaqGS:STRL) is 39.840600. This is calculated by taking weekly log normal returns and standard deviation of the share price over one year annualized. The lower the number, a company is thought to have low volatility. The Volatility 3m is a similar percentage determined by the daily log normal returns and standard deviation of the share price over 3 months. The Volatility 3m of Sterling Construction Company, Inc. (NasdaqGS:STRL) is 25.095800. The Volatility 6m is the same, except measured over the course of six months. The Volatility 6m is 38.507100.

**Quant Scores**

The Q.i. Value of Sterling Construction Company, Inc. (NasdaqGS:STRL) is 14.00000. The Q.i. Value is a helpful tool in determining if a company is undervalued or not. The Q.i. Value is calculated using the following ratios: EBITDA Yield, Earnings Yield, FCF Yield, and Liquidity. The lower the Q.i. value, the more undervalued the company is thought to be.

The Piotroski F-Score is a scoring system between 1-9 that determines a firm’s financial strength. The score helps determine if a company’s stock is valuable or not. The Piotroski F-Score of Sterling Construction Company, Inc. (NasdaqGS:STRL) is 7. A score of nine indicates a high value stock, while a score of one indicates a low value stock. The score is calculated by the return on assets (ROA), Cash flow return on assets (CFROA), change in return of assets, and quality of earnings. It is also calculated by a change in gearing or leverage, liquidity, and change in shares in issue. The score is also determined by change in gross margin and change in asset turnover.

The M-Score, conceived by accounting professor Messod Beneish, is a model for detecting whether a company has manipulated their earnings numbers or not. Sterling Construction Company, Inc. (NasdaqGS:STRL) has an M-Score of -2.607183. The M-Score is based on 8 different variables: Days’ sales in receivables index, Gross Margin Index, Asset Quality Index, Sales Growth Index, Depreciation Index, Sales, General and Administrative expenses Index, Leverage Index and Total Accruals to Total Assets. A score higher than -1.78 is an indicator that the company might be manipulating their numbers.

The Gross Margin Score is calculated by looking at the Gross Margin and the overall stability of the company over the course of 8 years. The score is a number between one and one hundred (1 being best and 100 being the worst). The Gross Margin Score of Sterling Construction Company, Inc. (NasdaqGS:STRL) is 55.00000. The more stable the company, the lower the score. If a company is less stable over the course of time, they will have a higher score.

Investors may be getting ready to buy into the stock market as we cruise into the second half of the year. Filtering out the constant noise in the markets can be challenging. Sifting through all the data can be trying, especially for the novice investor. Digging down into the fundamentals may help weed out the undesirable companies. Investors will most likely be scouting out the equity market for any bargains. Although they may be harder to find these days, there still may be a hidden gem out there somewhere. As companies start to report quarterly earnings, investors will be closely following to see which ones are poised for success over the next few quarters.