Statistically speaking, long term investing is a profitable endeavour. But no-one is immune from buying too high. For example, after five long years the Reach Subsea ASA (OB:REACH) share price is a whole 60% lower. That is extremely sub-optimal, to say the least. We also note that the stock has performed poorly over the last year, with the share price down 45%. Shareholders have had an even rougher run lately, with the share price down 25% in the last 90 days. However, one could argue that the price has been influenced by the general market, which is down 19% in the same timeframe.
Reach Subsea wasn’t profitable in the last twelve months, it is unlikely we’ll see a strong correlation between its share price and its earnings per share (EPS). Arguably revenue is our next best option. Shareholders of unprofitable companies usually expect strong revenue growth. Some companies are willing to postpone profitability to grow revenue faster, but in that case one does expect good top-line growth.
In the last half decade, Reach Subsea saw its revenue increase by 6.4% per year. That’s a fairly respectable growth rate. The share price, meanwhile, has fallen 17% compounded, over five years. That suggests the market is disappointed with the current growth rate. That could lead to an opportunity if the company is going to become profitable sooner rather than later.
The company’s revenue and earnings (over time) are depicted in the image below (click to see the exact numbers).
We’re pleased to report that the CEO is remunerated more modestly than most CEOs at similarly capitalized companies. But while CEO remuneration is always worth checking, the really important question is whether the company can grow earnings going forward. It might be well worthwhile taking a look at our free report on Reach Subsea’s earnings, revenue and cash flow.
What about the Total Shareholder Return (TSR)?
Investors should note that there’s a difference between Reach Subsea’s total shareholder return (TSR) and its share price change, which we’ve covered above. Arguably the TSR is a more complete return calculation because it accounts for the value of dividends (as if they were reinvested), along with the hypothetical value of any discounted capital that have been offered to shareholders. Its history of dividend payouts mean that Reach Subsea’s TSR, which was a 59% drop over the last 5 years, was not as bad as the share price return.
A Different Perspective
We regret to report that Reach Subsea shareholders are down 43% for the year. Unfortunately, that’s worse than the broader market decline of 17%. Having said that, it’s inevitable that some stocks will be oversold in a falling market. The key is to keep your eyes on the fundamental developments. Unfortunately, last year’s performance may indicate unresolved challenges, given that it was worse than the annualised loss of 16% over the last half decade. We realise that Baron Rothschild has said investors should “buy when there is blood on the streets”, but we caution that investors should first be sure they are buying a high quality business. While it is well worth considering the different impacts that market conditions can have on the share price, there are other factors that are even more important. Consider for instance, the ever-present spectre of investment risk. We’ve identified 4 warning signs with Reach Subsea (at least 1 which shouldn’t be ignored) , and understanding them should be part of your investment process.
For those who like to find winning investments this free list of growing companies with recent insider purchasing, could be just the ticket.
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on NO exchanges.
If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at firstname.lastname@example.org. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned.
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