For many, the main point of investing is to generate higher returns than the overall market. But the main game is to find enough winners to more than offset the losers So we wouldn't blame long term Bodal Chemicals Limited (NSE:BODALCHEM) shareholders for doubting their decision to hold, with the stock down 43% over a half decade. Shareholders have had an even rougher run lately, with the share price down 18% in the last 90 days. But this could be related to the weak market, which is down 8.9% in the same period.
Since Bodal Chemicals has shed ₹1.6b from its value in the past 7 days, let's see if the longer term decline has been driven by the business' economics.
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 five years over which the share price declined, Bodal Chemicals' earnings per share (EPS) dropped by 7.6% each year. Readers should note that the share price has fallen faster than the EPS, at a rate of 11% per year, over the period. So it seems the market was too confident about the business, in the past. The less favorable sentiment is reflected in its current P/E ratio of 11.67.
The company's earnings per share (over time) is depicted in the image below (click to see the exact numbers).
This free interactive report on Bodal Chemicals' earnings, revenue and cash flow is a great place to start, if you want to investigate the stock further.
What About Dividends?
When looking at investment returns, it is important to consider the difference between total shareholder return (TSR) and share price return. The TSR is a return calculation that accounts for the value of cash dividends (assuming that any dividend received was reinvested) and the calculated value of any discounted capital raisings and spin-offs. Arguably, the TSR gives a more comprehensive picture of the return generated by a stock. We note that for Bodal Chemicals the TSR over the last 5 years was -40%, which is better than the share price return mentioned above. The dividends paid by the company have thusly boosted the total shareholder return.
A Different Perspective
While the broader market gained around 13% in the last year, Bodal Chemicals shareholders lost 4.6% (even including dividends). However, keep in mind that even the best stocks will sometimes underperform the market over a twelve month period. Unfortunately, longer term shareholders are suffering worse, given the loss of 7% doled out over the last five years. We'd need to see some sustained improvements in the key metrics before we could muster much enthusiasm. 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. Like risks, for instance. Every company has them, and we've spotted 4 warning signs for Bodal Chemicals (of which 2 are significant!) you should know about.
We will like Bodal Chemicals better if we see some big insider buys. While we wait, check out this free list of growing companies with considerable, recent, insider buying.
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on IN exchanges.
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.