With EPS Growth And More, Huntington Ingalls Industries (NYSE:HII) Is Interesting

Some have more dollars than sense, they say, so even companies that have no revenue, no profit, and a record of falling short, can easily find investors. But the reality is that when a company loses money each year, for long enough, its investors will usually take their share of those losses.

So if you’re like me, you might be more interested in profitable, growing companies, like Huntington Ingalls Industries (NYSE:HII). While that doesn’t make the shares worth buying at any price, you can’t deny that successful capitalism requires profit, eventually. Conversely, a loss-making company is yet to prove itself with profit, and eventually the sweet milk of external capital may run sour.

See our latest analysis for Huntington Ingalls Industries

How Fast Is Huntington Ingalls Industries Growing?

As one of my mentors once told me, share price follows earnings per share (EPS). Therefore, there are plenty of investors who like to buy shares in companies that are growing EPS. As a tree reaches steadily for the sky, Huntington Ingalls Industries’s EPS has grown 21% each year, compound, over three years. As a general rule, we’d say that if a company can keep up that sort of growth, shareholders will be smiling.

I like to see top-line growth as an indication that growth is sustainable, and I look for a high earnings before interest and taxation (EBIT) margin to point to a competitive moat (though some companies with low margins also have moats). On the one hand, Huntington Ingalls Industries’s EBIT margins fell over the last year, but on the other hand, revenue grew. So it seems the future my hold further growth, especially if EBIT margins can stabilize.

NYSE:HII Income Statement, August 25th 2019
NYSE:HII Income Statement, August 25th 2019

You don’t drive with your eyes on the rear-view mirror, so you might be more interested in this free report showing analyst forecasts for Huntington Ingalls Industries’s future profits.

Are Huntington Ingalls Industries Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?

Since Huntington Ingalls Industries has a market capitalization of US$8.4b, we wouldn’t expect insiders to hold a large percentage of shares. But we do take comfort from the fact that they are investors in the company. Indeed, they have a glittering mountain of wealth invested in it, currently valued at US$210m. I would find that kind of skin in the game quite encouraging, if I owned shares, since it would ensure that the leaders of the company would also experience my success, or failure, with the stock.

It’s good to see that insiders are invested in the company, but are remuneration levels reasonable? A brief analysis of the CEO compensation suggests they are. For companies with market capitalizations between US$4.0b and US$12b, like Huntington Ingalls Industries, the median CEO pay is around US$6.9m.

Huntington Ingalls Industries offered total compensation worth US$5.6m to its CEO in the year to December 2018. That comes in below the average for similar sized companies, and seems pretty reasonable to me. While the level of CEO compensation isn’t a huge factor in my view of the company, modest remuneration is a positive, because it suggests that the board keeps shareholder interests in mind. It can also be a sign of good governance, more generally.

Is Huntington Ingalls Industries Worth Keeping An Eye On?

For growth investors like me, Huntington Ingalls Industries’s raw rate of earnings growth is a beacon in the night. If that’s not enough, consider also that the CEO pay is quite reasonable, and insiders are well-invested alongside other shareholders. Each to their own, but I think all this makes Huntington Ingalls Industries look rather interesting indeed. Now, you could try to make up your mind on Huntington Ingalls Industries by focusing on just these factors, or you could also consider how its price-to-earnings ratio compares to other companies in its industry.

Although Huntington Ingalls Industries certainly looks good to me, I would like it more if insiders were buying up shares. If you like to see insider buying, too, then this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying, could be exactly what you’re looking for.

Please note the insider transactions discussed in this article refer to reportable transactions in the relevant jurisdiction

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If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. 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. Thank you for reading.