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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 Good Friend International Holdings Inc. (HKG:2398) share price is a whole 61% lower. That is extremely sub-optimal, to say the least. And it’s not just long term holders hurting, because the stock is down 46% in the last year. Shareholders have had an even rougher run lately, with the share price down 38% in the last 90 days.
There is no denying that markets are sometimes efficient, but prices do not always reflect underlying business performance. One flawed but reasonable way to assess how sentiment around a company has changed is to compare the earnings per share (EPS) with the share price.
In the last half decade Good Friend International Holdings saw its share price fall as its EPS declined below zero. This was, in part, due to extraordinary items impacting earnings. At present it’s hard to make valid comparisons between EPS and the share price. But we would generally expect a lower price, given the situation.
The graphic below depicts how EPS has changed over time (unveil the exact values by clicking on the image).
It’s probably worth noting that the CEO is paid less than the median at similar sized companies. But while CEO remuneration is always worth checking, the really important question is whether the company can grow earnings going forward. Before buying or selling a stock, we always recommend a close examination of historic growth trends, available here..
What about the Total Shareholder Return (TSR)?
Investors should note that there’s a difference between Good Friend International Holdings’s total shareholder return (TSR) and its share price change, which we’ve covered above. The TSR attempts to capture the value of dividends (as if they were reinvested) as well as any spin-offs or discounted capital raisings offered to shareholders. Its history of dividend payouts mean that Good Friend International Holdings’s TSR, which was a 52% drop over the last 5 years, was not as bad as the share price return.
A Different Perspective
While the broader market lost about 13% in the twelve months, Good Friend International Holdings shareholders did even worse, losing 42%. 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 14% 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. You might want to assess this data-rich visualization of its earnings, revenue and cash flow.
Of course Good Friend International Holdings 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 HK 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 email@example.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.