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Asset Turnover Ratio


The Asset Turnover Ratio is a financial metric that helps evaluate a company’s efficiency in using its assets to generate revenue. It is calculated by dividing a company’s annual revenues by its total assets. A higher ratio indicates a more efficient use of assets, while a lower ratio suggests less efficiency.


The phonetics of “Asset Turnover Ratio” is:æs.ɛt tɝːnˈoʊ.vər reɪʃ.ioʊ

Key Takeaways

  1. The Asset Turnover Ratio measures the efficiency of a company’s use of its assets in generating sales revenue. It indicates how many dollars of revenue are achieved for each dollar invested in assets.
  2. A higher Asset Turnover Ratio generally suggests that a company is more efficient at using its assets, implying better operational efficiency and profitability. However, the ideal ratio can vary significantly across different industries.
  3. The Asset Turnover Ratio is a key component in the determination of a business’s overall performance and health, particularly its operational effectiveness. It’s important to look at this ratio over time and in comparison to comparable companies in the same industry for a more comprehensive understanding.


The Asset Turnover Ratio is a key indicator of the operational efficiency of a company and its ability to generate revenue from its assets. It is calculated by dividing the company’s net sales by its total assets. This measure is crucial in the financial analysis of a company as it portrays how effectively the company is using its assets to produce revenue. If a company has a high asset turnover ratio, it indicates that the company is utilizing its assets efficiently to create sales. Conversely, a lower ratio might point to an issue in asset management or sales. The asset turnover ratio can also be used to benchmark and compare a company’s performance against its competitors within the same industry, thus providing valuable insights for investors and stakeholders.


The primary purpose of the Asset Turnover Ratio in finance and business is to evaluate the efficiency of a company regarding the use of its assets to generate sales or revenue. It serves as a critical tool for investors, creditors, and internal management to assess a firm’s operational efficiency, which reflects the effectiveness of its management in employing assets to fuel business profits. A high ratio indicates that the company is efficient at using its assets to generate sales, suggesting strong management and a sustainable business model. Conversely, a low ratio may signify inefficiency in managing and deploying resources. The Asset Turnover Ratio is extensively used for comparative analysis, assisting stakeholders in making informed decisions about investing or lending. By comparing this ratio with firms in the same industry, an investor can determine whether a company is better equipped to utilize its assets for revenue generation or not. For internal management, this ratio can identify areas where improvements may be needed, such as inventory management or investment in capital assets. Additionally, it can also indicate the need for strategic changes, such as diversification of assets or changing business operations, to enhance the overall performance and profitability of the company.


1. Apple Inc: As one of the world’s leading technology companies, Apple’s asset turnover ratio would be a measure of how effectively it uses its assets to generate sales. It compares the company’s total sales to its average total assets. For example, in the financial year of 2020, if Apple’s total sales were $274 billion and its total assets averaged at $323 billion, its asset turnover ratio would be 0.85. This suggests that Apple generated 85 cents in sales for every dollar of assets it had. 2. Walmart Inc: As a retail company, Walmart operates on thin profit margins but high sales volume; therefore, it has a very high asset turnover ratio. For example, if Walmart’s sales in a particular year were $520 billion and its total assets for the same year averaged at $220 billion, the asset turnover ratio would be 2.36. This means for every dollar in assets, Walmart generated $2.36 in sales. 3. General Motors (GM): If General Motors had total sales or revenue of $137 billion in 2020 and their average total assets over the year were $233 billion, the asset turnover ratio is 0.59. This means that for each dollar of assets, GM generated approximately 59 cents in revenue. This ratio could be compared with competitors in the auto industry to analyze the efficiency of each company’s use of assets.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

What is the Asset Turnover Ratio?
Asset Turnover Ratio (ATR) is a financial metric that gauges a company’s efficiency in using its assets to generate sales or revenue. It is a measure of how effectively a company is using its assets to produce sales.
How can you calculate the Asset Turnover Ratio?
The Asset Turnover Ratio can be calculated by dividing the net sales or revenue by the average total assets of the company during the period under review.
What does a higher Asset Turnover Ratio indicate?
A higher Asset Turnover Ratio may imply that a company uses its assets more efficiently to generate sales. In essence, a higher ATR denotes better financial performance and operational efficiency.
What does a lower Asset Turnover Ratio mean?
A lower Asset Turnover Ratio can indicate that a company is not using its assets efficiently to generate sales. This could be due to mismanagement of assets, or it could be a sign that the company operates in an industry with high investment requirements.
Can a company have too high of an Asset Turnover Ratio?
While a higher Asset Turnover Ratio generally indicates a company is effectively using its assets to generate revenue, an extremely high ratio can suggest that the company isn’t investing enough in its infrastructure, equipment, or technology, which could hurt the company’s long term growth.
Is the Asset Turnover Ratio applicable to all businesses?
The Asset Turnover Ratio may be more useful for companies in certain sectors. For example, companies operating in capital-intensive industries, such as manufacturing, typically have lower asset turnover ratios compared to companies in the service sectors.
How often should a company calculate its Asset Turnover Ratio?
The regularity will depend on the company’s needs. However, most companies generally calculate the ratio on a quarterly or annual basis when financial statements are generated, providing a consistent measure of operational efficiency.
What should be the ideal Asset Turnover Ratio?
The ideal Asset Turnover Ratio varies across different industry sectors. However, a larger ratio is typically preferred as it usually indicates more efficient use of assets. However, industry averages should be looked at for a more accurate comparison and benchmark.
Can Asset Turnover Ratio be used to compare companies in different sectors?
While Asset Turnover Ratio is a useful metric for comparing companies within the same sector, it may not provide meaningful insights when comparing across different sectors due to variations in business operations and capital requirements.
: How can a company improve its Asset Turnover Ratio?
Companies can improve their Asset Turnover Ratio by increasing sales revenue without substantial increases in assets, or by reducing asset bases (selling off unproductive assets) without a significant decrease in sales. Properly managing inventory and credit control can also improve the ratio.

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