While M/I Homes, Inc. (NYSE:MHO) shareholders are probably generally happy, the stock hasn't had particularly good run recently, with the share price falling 26% in the last quarter. On the bright side the share price is up over the last half decade. Unfortunately its return of 68% is below the market return of 108%.
While this past week has detracted from the company's five-year return, let's look at the recent trends of the underlying business and see if the gains have been in alignment.
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.
Over half a decade, M/I Homes managed to grow its earnings per share at 46% a year. This EPS growth is higher than the 11% average annual increase in the share price. So one could conclude that the broader market has become more cautious towards the stock. The reasonably low P/E ratio of 2.97 also suggests market apprehension.
You can see how EPS has changed over time in the image below (click on the chart to see the exact values).
It is of course excellent to see how M/I Homes has grown profits over the years, but the future is more important for shareholders. You can see how its balance sheet has strengthened (or weakened) over time in this free interactive graphic.
A Different Perspective
M/I Homes shareholders are down 32% for the year, but the market itself is up 2.0%. However, keep in mind that even the best stocks will sometimes underperform the market over a twelve month period. Longer term investors wouldn't be so upset, since they would have made 11%, each year, over five years. If the fundamental data continues to indicate long term sustainable growth, the current sell-off could be an opportunity worth considering. 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 M/I Homes is showing 4 warning signs in our investment analysis , and 2 of those are significant...
Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a peek at this free list of companies we expect will grow earnings.
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on US 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.