The main point of investing for the long term is to make money. But more than that, you probably want to see it rise more than the market average. Unfortunately for shareholders, while the Sturm, Ruger & Company, Inc. (NYSE:RGR) share price is up 26% in the last five years, that’s less than the market return. The last year has been disappointing, with the stock price down 9.2% in that time.
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…’ 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.
Sturm Ruger’s earnings per share are down 13% per year, despite strong share price performance over five years.
The strong decline in earnings per share suggests the market isn’t using EPS to judge the company. The falling EPS doesn’t correlate with the climbing share price, so it’s worth taking a look at other metrics.
The revenue reduction of 4.1% per year is not a positive. So it seems one might have to take closer look at earnings and revenue trends to see how they might influence the share price.
You can see below how earnings and revenue have changed over time (discover the exact values by clicking on the image).
We like that insiders have been buying shares in the last twelve months. Having said that, most people consider earnings and revenue growth trends to be a more meaningful guide to the business. Dive deeper into the earnings by checking this interactive graph of Sturm Ruger’s earnings, revenue and cash flow.
What About Dividends?
It is important to consider the total shareholder return, as well as the share price return, for any given stock. Whereas the share price return only reflects the change in the share price, the TSR includes the value of dividends (assuming they were reinvested) and the benefit of any discounted capital raising or spin-off. Arguably, the TSR gives a more comprehensive picture of the return generated by a stock. We note that for Sturm Ruger the TSR over the last 5 years was 41%, which is better than the share price return mentioned above. This is largely a result of its dividend payments!
A Different Perspective
Investors in Sturm Ruger had a tough year, with a total loss of 7.7% (including dividends) , against a market gain of about 28%. 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 7.1%, each year, over five years. It could be that the recent sell-off is an opportunity, so it may be worth checking the fundamental data for signs of a long term growth trend. While it is well worth considering the different impacts that market conditions can have on the share price, there are other factors that are even more important. Like risks, for instance. Every company has them, and we’ve spotted 2 warning signs for Sturm Ruger (of which 1 shouldn’t be ignored!) you should know about.
If you like to buy stocks alongside management, then you might just love this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on US exchanges.
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.
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. Thank you for reading.