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The Shareholder Forum

Returns on Corporate Capital™

—- comparisons of company returns based on GAAP-defined performance measurements —-


produced according to defined methodology and specifications with data provided by

EDGAR Online, a division of Donnelley Financial Solutions,

from SEC records of each subject company’s audited statements



To download a printable copy of this report and its referenced definition of ROCC, click here.

Forum Report: Fair Investor Access

Workshop: “ROCC” metrics


Concluding Refinements of Methodology


“Returns on Corporate Capital”

With thanks to all the invited experts who contributed views as well as technology, we now have a final definition of “Returns on Corporate Capital” (“ROCC”) that can be presented in easily understood form for free public reference. The graphing tool, with a search input developed for our requirements to find and present ROCC for any of the 5,700 "public companies" currently subject to U.S. SEC reporting requirements, is now posted on the Forum website for your use.

The final definition of “Methodology and Specifications” for calculating ROCC has also been posted. The most significant refinements from the June version are the calculation of returns based on the same year’s asset and income data rather than prior period assets, and a policy of reporting industry comparisons only if there are at least 4 companies to make the industry numbers meaningful. More detailed explanations of these and other analytical decisions are presented in the posted report, and any questions about the issues that were considered will be welcomed.

It should of course be understood that there are – and should be – continuing debates about “the right way” to measure and compare the returns companies generate from their use of capital. Our objective for this project was simply to establish a metric that is (a) viewed by professionals as an acceptably reasonable basis for analysis, (b) consistently defined, so that different users can effectively compare and test what others present, and (c) calculated from reliably sourced, independently verifiable data.

We never expected to develop a metric that everyone considered perfect, but I believe that everyone who contributed to this project can be proud of a best possible solution, and one that all of us can effectively present to encourage investor focus on the essential use of corporate capital to produce goods and services.

GL – October 20, 2017

Gary Lutin

Chairman, The Shareholder Forum

575 Madison Avenue, New York, New York 10022

Tel: 212-605-0335





Permission is granted to republish images of the graphs of Returns on Corporate Capital as presented on this website with their full statements of source and copyright information, or as otherwise specifically approved to satisfactorily describe the analysis and sources, and to respect the intellectual property rights of both the Shareholder Forum and its cited contributors of research.

Information requests and suggestions of research applications for Returns on Corporate Capital or variations of the analysis can be addressed to the Shareholder Forum at


The information provided to Forum participants is intended for their private reference, and permission has not been granted for the republishing of any copyrighted material other than as specifically stated. The material presented on this web site is the responsibility of Gary Lutin, as chairman of the Shareholder Forum.

Shareholder Forum™ is a trademark owned by The Shareholder Forum, Inc., for the programs conducted since 1999 to support investor access to decision-making information. It should be noted that we have no responsibility for the services that Broadridge Financial Solutions, Inc., introduced for review in the Forum's 2010 "E-Meetings" program and has since been offering with the “Shareholder Forum” name, and we have asked Broadridge to use a different name that does not suggest our support or endorsement.