One simple way to benefit from the stock market is to buy an index fund. But if you choose individual stocks with prowess, you can make superior returns. Just take a look at Sparebanken Møre (OB:MORG), which is up 66%, over three years, soundly beating the market return of 32% (not including dividends). However, more recent returns haven’t been as impressive as that, with the stock returning just 18% in the last year, including dividends.
To quote Buffett, ‘Ships will sail around the world but the Flat Earth Society will flourish. There will continue to be wide discrepancies between price and value in the marketplace…’ 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.
During three years of share price growth, Sparebanken Møre achieved compound earnings per share growth of 5.5% per year. This EPS growth is lower than the 18% average annual increase in the share price. So it’s fair to assume the market has a higher opinion of the business than it did three years ago. That’s not necessarily surprising considering the three-year track record of earnings growth.
The graphic below depicts how EPS has changed over time (unveil the exact values by clicking on the image).
It might be well worthwhile taking a look at our free report on Sparebanken Møre’s earnings, revenue and cash flow.
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 incorporates the value of any spin-offs or discounted capital raisings, along with any dividends, based on the assumption that the dividends are reinvested. Arguably, the TSR gives a more comprehensive picture of the return generated by a stock. In the case of Sparebanken Møre, it has a TSR of 97% for the last 3 years. That exceeds its share price return that we previously mentioned. The dividends paid by the company have thusly boosted the total shareholder return.
A Different Perspective
It’s good to see that Sparebanken Møre has rewarded shareholders with a total shareholder return of 18% in the last twelve months. And that does include the dividend. That gain is better than the annual TSR over five years, which is 16%. Therefore it seems like sentiment around the company has been positive lately. In the best case scenario, this may hint at some real business momentum, implying that now could be a great time to delve deeper. Most investors take the time to check the data on insider transactions. You can click here to see if insiders have been buying or selling.
If you are like me, then you will not want to miss this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying.Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on NO 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.