Tai Hing Group Holdings Limited (HKG:6811) shareholders would be excited to see that the share price has had a great month, posting a 29% gain and recovering from prior weakness. But not all shareholders will be feeling jubilant, since the share price is still down a very disappointing 42% in the last twelve months.
Since its price has surged higher, given close to half the companies in Hong Kong have price-to-earnings ratios (or "P/E's") below 9x, you may consider Tai Hing Group Holdings as a stock to potentially avoid with its 13.6x P/E ratio. However, the P/E might be high for a reason and it requires further investigation to determine if it's justified.
While the market has experienced earnings growth lately, Tai Hing Group Holdings' earnings have gone into reverse gear, which is not great. One possibility is that the P/E is high because investors think this poor earnings performance will turn the corner. If not, then existing shareholders may be extremely nervous about the viability of the share price.free report on Tai Hing Group Holdings.
Does Growth Match The High P/E?
Tai Hing Group Holdings' P/E ratio would be typical for a company that's expected to deliver solid growth, and importantly, perform better than the market.
Retrospectively, the last year delivered a frustrating 16% decrease to the company's bottom line. This means it has also seen a slide in earnings over the longer-term as EPS is down 76% in total over the last three years. So unfortunately, we have to acknowledge that the company has not done a great job of growing earnings over that time.
Looking ahead now, EPS is anticipated to climb by 32% each year during the coming three years according to the one analyst following the company. That's shaping up to be materially higher than the 15% per year growth forecast for the broader market.
With this information, we can see why Tai Hing Group Holdings is trading at such a high P/E compared to the market. It seems most investors are expecting this strong future growth and are willing to pay more for the stock.
The Key Takeaway
The large bounce in Tai Hing Group Holdings' shares has lifted the company's P/E to a fairly high level. We'd say the price-to-earnings ratio's power isn't primarily as a valuation instrument but rather to gauge current investor sentiment and future expectations.
As we suspected, our examination of Tai Hing Group Holdings' analyst forecasts revealed that its superior earnings outlook is contributing to its high P/E. Right now shareholders are comfortable with the P/E as they are quite confident future earnings aren't under threat. Unless these conditions change, they will continue to provide strong support to the share price.
It's always necessary to consider the ever-present spectre of investment risk. We've identified 2 warning signs with Tai Hing Group Holdings, and understanding these should be part of your investment process.
It's important to make sure you look for a great company, not just the first idea you come across. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies with strong recent earnings growth (and a P/E ratio below 20x).
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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.