It's only natural that many investors, especially those who are new to the game, prefer to buy shares in 'sexy' stocks with a good story, even if those businesses lose money. Unfortunately, high risk investments often have little probability of ever paying off, and many investors pay a price to learn their lesson.
In contrast to all that, I prefer to spend time on companies like Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (TSE:CM), which has not only revenues, but also profits. While that doesn't make the shares worth buying at any price, you can't deny that successful capitalism requires profit, eventually. Loss-making companies are always racing against time to reach financial sustainability, but time is often a friend of the profitable company, especially if it is growing.
How Fast Is Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce Growing?
The market is a voting machine in the short term, but a weighing machine in the long term, so share price follows earnings per share (EPS) eventually. That makes EPS growth an attractive quality for any company. We can see that in the last three years Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce grew its EPS by 6.0% per year. That might not be particularly high growth, but it does show that per-share earnings are moving steadily in the right direction.
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). Not all of Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce's revenue this year is revenue from operations, so keep in mind the revenue and margin numbers I've used might not be the best representation of the underlying business. While we note Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce's EBIT margins were flat over the last year, revenue grew by a solid 22% to CA$20b. That's progress.
In the chart below, you can see how the company has grown earnings, and revenue, over time. Click on the chart to see the exact numbers.
While we live in the present moment at all times, there's no doubt in my mind that the future matters more than the past. So why not check this interactive chart depicting future EPS estimates, for Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce?
Are Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?
Since Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce has a market capitalization of CA$67b, we wouldn't expect insiders to hold a large percentage of shares. But we are reassured by the fact they have invested in the company. To be specific, they have CA$30m worth of shares. That shows significant buy-in, and may indicate conviction in the business strategy. Despite being just 0.05% of the company, the value of that investment is enough to show insiders have plenty riding on the venture.
Is Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce Worth Keeping An Eye On?
One important encouraging feature of Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce is that it is growing profits. Just as polish makes silverware pop, the high level of insider ownership enhances my enthusiasm for this growth. That combination appeals to me, for one. So yes, I do think the stock is worth keeping an eye on. While we've looked at the quality of the earnings, we haven't yet done any work to value the stock. So if you like to buy cheap, you may want to check if Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce is trading on a high P/E or a low P/E, relative to its industry.
Although Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce 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.
Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.
This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.