If you are building a properly diversified stock portfolio, the chances are some of your picks will perform badly. But the long term shareholders of Van de Velde NV (EBR:VAN) have had an unfortunate run in the last three years. Unfortunately, they have held through a 60% decline in the share price in that time. Furthermore, it’s down 19% in about a quarter. That’s not much fun for holders.
While the efficient markets hypothesis continues to be taught by some, it has been proven that markets are over-reactive dynamic systems, and investors are not always rational. One imperfect but simple way to consider how the market perception of a company has shifted is to compare the change in the earnings per share (EPS) with the share price movement.
Van de Velde saw its EPS decline at a compound rate of 15% per year, over the last three years. This reduction in EPS is slower than the 26% annual reduction in the share price. So it’s likely that the EPS decline has disappointed the market, leaving investors hesitant to buy.
It might be well worthwhile taking a look at our free report on Van de Velde’s earnings, revenue and cash flow.
What About Dividends?
When looking at investment returns, it is important to consider the difference between total shareholder return (TSR) and share price return. The TSR is a return calculation that accounts for the value of cash dividends (assuming that any dividend received was reinvested) and the calculated value of any discounted capital raisings and spin-offs. So for companies that pay a generous dividend, the TSR is often a lot higher than the share price return. In the case of Van de Velde, it has a TSR of -56% for the last 3 years. That exceeds its share price return that we previously mentioned. And there’s no prize for guessing that the dividend payments largely explain the divergence!
A Different Perspective
While the broader market lost about 2.5% in the twelve months, Van de Velde shareholders did even worse, losing 11% (even including dividends). 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 4.4% over the last half decade. We realise that Buffett 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 businesses. Keeping this in mind, a solid next step might be to take a look at Van de Velde’s dividend track record. This free interactive graph is a great place to start.
We will like Van de Velde better if we see some big insider buys. While we wait, check out this free list of growing companies with considerable, recent, insider buying.
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on BE exchanges.
We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.
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. Thank you for reading.