- United Kingdom
Past Three Years Unprofitable For Coca-Cola HBC Investors
In order to justify the effort of selecting individual stocks, it's worth striving to beat the returns from a market index fund. But the risk of stock picking is that you will likely buy under-performing companies. Unfortunately, that's been the case for longer term Coca-Cola HBC AG (LON:CCH) shareholders, since the share price is down 32% in the last three years, falling well short of the market decline of around 11%.
So let's have a look and see if the longer term performance of the company has been in line with the underlying business' progress.
Check out our latest analysis for Coca-Cola HBC
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. By comparing earnings per share (EPS) and share price changes over time, we can get a feel for how investor attitudes to a company have morphed over time.
During the unfortunate three years of share price decline, Coca-Cola HBC actually saw its earnings per share (EPS) improve by 3.1% per year. This is quite a puzzle, and suggests there might be something temporarily buoying the share price. Alternatively, growth expectations may have been unreasonable in the past.
It looks to us like the market was probably too optimistic around growth three years ago. However, taking a look at other business metrics might shed a bit more light on the share price action.
Revenue is actually up 4.1% over the three years, so the share price drop doesn't seem to hinge on revenue, either. This analysis is just perfunctory, but it might be worth researching Coca-Cola HBC more closely, as sometimes stocks fall unfairly. This could present an opportunity.
The image below shows how earnings and revenue have tracked over time (if you click on the image you can see greater detail).
Coca-Cola HBC is well known by investors, and plenty of clever analysts have tried to predict the future profit levels. So we recommend checking out this free report showing consensus forecasts
What About Dividends?
As well as measuring the share price return, investors should also consider the total shareholder return (TSR). Whereas the share price return only reflects the change in the share price, the TSR includes the value of dividends (assuming they were reinvested) and the benefit of any discounted capital raising or spin-off. So for companies that pay a generous dividend, the TSR is often a lot higher than the share price return. In the case of Coca-Cola HBC, it has a TSR of -26% 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 gained around 0.2% in the last year, Coca-Cola HBC shareholders lost 19% (even including dividends). Even the share prices of good stocks drop sometimes, but we want to see improvements in the fundamental metrics of a business, before getting too interested. Unfortunately, last year's performance may indicate unresolved challenges, given that it was worse than the annualised loss of 0.8% over the last half decade. Generally speaking long term share price weakness can be a bad sign, though contrarian investors might want to research the stock in hope of a turnaround. It's always interesting to track share price performance over the longer term. But to understand Coca-Cola HBC better, we need to consider many other factors. Consider for instance, the ever-present spectre of investment risk. We've identified 2 warning signs with Coca-Cola HBC , and understanding them should be part of your investment process.
Of course Coca-Cola HBC may not be the best stock to buy. So you may wish to see this free collection of growth stocks.
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on GB exchanges.
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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.
Coca-Cola HBC AG engages in the production, distribution, and sale of non-alcoholic ready-to-drink beverages under franchise in Switzerland and internationally.
Established dividend payer with adequate balance sheet.