The five-year loss for Litu Holdings (HKG:1008) shareholders likely driven by its shrinking earnings

Published
June 24, 2022
SEHK:1008
Source: Shutterstock

Litu Holdings Limited (HKG:1008) shareholders should be happy to see the share price up 18% in the last month. But don't envy holders -- looking back over 5 years the returns have been really bad. In that time the share price has delivered a rude shock to holders, who find themselves down 74% after a long stretch. So is the recent increase sufficient to restore confidence in the stock? Not yet. We'd err towards caution given the long term under-performance.

On a more encouraging note the company has added HK$63m to its market cap in just the last 7 days, so let's see if we can determine what's driven the five-year loss for shareholders.

Check out our latest analysis for Litu Holdings

To paraphrase Benjamin Graham: Over the short term the market is a voting machine, but over the long term it's a weighing machine. 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.

Looking back five years, both Litu Holdings' share price and EPS declined; the latter at a rate of 50% per year. This fall in the EPS is worse than the 24% compound annual share price fall. The relatively muted share price reaction might be because the market expects the business to turn around. The high P/E ratio of 54.55 suggests that shareholders believe earnings will grow in the years ahead.

The image below shows how EPS has tracked over time (if you click on the image you can see greater detail).

earnings-per-share-growth
SEHK:1008 Earnings Per Share Growth June 24th 2022

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)?

We'd be remiss not to mention the difference between Litu Holdings' total shareholder return (TSR) and its share price return. Arguably the TSR is a more complete return calculation because it accounts for the value of dividends (as if they were reinvested), along with the hypothetical value of any discounted capital that have been offered to shareholders. Dividends have been really beneficial for Litu Holdings shareholders, and that cash payout explains why its total shareholder loss of 53%, over the last 5 years, isn't as bad as the share price return.

A Different Perspective

While the broader market lost about 21% in the twelve months, Litu Holdings shareholders did even worse, losing 25%. However, it could simply be that the share price has been impacted by broader market jitters. It might be worth keeping an eye on the fundamentals, in case there's a good opportunity. Regrettably, last year's performance caps off a bad run, with the shareholders facing a total loss of 9% per year over five years. 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. I find it very interesting to look at share price over the long term as a proxy for business performance. But to truly gain insight, we need to consider other information, too. Even so, be aware that Litu Holdings is showing 3 warning signs in our investment analysis , and 1 of those is a bit concerning...

For those who like to find winning investments this free list of growing companies with recent insider purchasing, could be just the ticket.

Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on HK exchanges.

Discounted cash flow calculation for every stock

Simply Wall St does a detailed discounted cash flow calculation every 6 hours for every stock on the market, so if you want to find the intrinsic value of any company just search here. It’s FREE.

Make Confident Investment Decisions

Simply Wall St's Editorial Team provides unbiased, factual reporting on global stocks using in-depth fundamental analysis.
Find out more about our editorial guidelines and team.