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Return On Investment (ROI)

Updated: Apr 26

Return on investment (ROI) is a performance measure used to evaluate the efficiency or profitability of an investment or compare the efficiency of a number of different investments. ROI tries to directly measure the amount of return on a particular investment, relative to the investment’s cost.


How to Calculate Return on Investment (ROI)


ROI = (Current Value of Investment - Cost of Investment) / Cost of Investment

Current Value of Investment refers to the proceeds obtained from the sale of the investment of interest. Because ROI is measured as a percentage, it can be easily compared with returns from other investments, allowing one to measure a variety of types of investments against one another.


ROI is a popular metric because of its versatility and simplicity. Essentially, ROI can be used as a rudimentary gauge of an investment’s profitability. This could be the ROI on a stock investment, the ROI a company expects on expanding a factory, or the ROI generated in a real estate transaction.


The calculation itself is not too complicated, and it is relatively easy to interpret for its wide range of applications. If an investment’s ROI is net positive, it is probably worthwhile. But if other opportunities with higher ROIs are available, these signals can help investors eliminate or select the best options. Likewise, investors should avoid negative ROIs, which imply a net loss.

Source: Investopedia, Return on Investment (ROI): How to Calculate It and What It Means, accessed 25 April 2024, <https://www.investopedia.com/terms/r/returnoninvestment.asp>

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