What is Stock Turnover Ratio?

Stock Turnover Ratio

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Stock Turnover Ratio

The Stock Turnover Ratio (also known as the Inventory Turnover Ratio) is a financial metric that measures the number of times a company’s inventory is sold and replaced over a certain period, typically a year. It provides insights into a company’s inventory management efficiency and indicates how well a company is converting its inventory into sales.

A high ratio suggests that a company is effectively managing its inventory and has strong sales, while a low ratio could imply weak sales, overstocking, or issues with inventory obsolescence. However, the “ideal” ratio varies by industry. For example, a grocery store, which deals with perishable goods, would typically have a higher turnover rate than a car dealership.

Stock Turnover Ratio = Cost of Goods Sold (COGS) / Average Inventory


  • Cost of Goods Sold (COGS) is the total cost of goods that were sold during the period.
  • Average Inventory can be calculated as:
    Average Inventory = Beginning Inventory + Ending Inventory / 2
    (For a more accurate measure, some companies use monthly inventory averages.)

Example of Stock Turnover Ratio

Let’s dive into a hypothetical example to better understand the Stock Turnover Ratio.


TrendyShoes Inc. is a retailer that sells a variety of fashionable shoes. For the year 2022, the company has the following financial data:

  • Beginning Inventory: $300,000
  • Ending Inventory: $200,000
  • Cost of Goods Sold (COGS): $1,500,000

Steps to Calculate Stock Turnover Ratio:

  1. Calculate Average Inventory:

Using the formula:
Average Inventory = Beginning Inventory + Ending Inventory / 2

Average Inventory = $300,000 + $200,000 / 2
Average Inventory = $250,000

  1. Calculate Stock Turnover Ratio:

Using the formula:
Stock Turnover Ratio = COGS / Average Inventory

Stock Turnover Ratio = $1,500,000 / $250,000
Stock Turnover Ratio = 6


The Stock Turnover Ratio of 6 indicates that TrendyShoes Inc. sold and replaced its inventory six times throughout 2022.

Now, for context, let’s assume the average Stock Turnover Ratio for the shoe retail industry is 5. In comparison to the industry average, TrendyShoes Inc.’s ratio of 6 is higher, suggesting that they might be managing their inventory more efficiently or have stronger sales than other businesses in their industry. Alternatively, if they consistently run out of popular items, they might be understocking, leading to potential missed sales opportunities.

To make meaningful conclusions, the company should dive deeper into sales data, customer feedback, and inventory levels, and perhaps compare with other financial metrics.

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