With EPS Growth And More, Royal Caribbean Cruises (NYSE:RCL) Is Interesting

Some have more dollars than sense, they say, so even companies that have no revenue, no profit, and a record of falling short, can easily find investors. But as Peter Lynch said in One Up On Wall Street, ‘Long shots almost never pay off.’

So if you’re like me, you might be more interested in profitable, growing companies, like Royal Caribbean Cruises (NYSE:RCL). While that doesn’t make the shares worth buying at any price, you can’t deny that successful capitalism requires profit, eventually. In comparison, loss making companies act like a sponge for capital – but unlike such a sponge they do not always produce something when squeezed.

View our latest analysis for Royal Caribbean Cruises

How Fast Is Royal Caribbean Cruises Growing?

As one of my mentors once told me, share price follows earnings per share (EPS). It’s no surprise, then, that I like to invest in companies with EPS growth. Who among us would not applaud Royal Caribbean Cruises’s stratospheric annual EPS growth of 42%, compound, over the last three years? Growth that fast may well be fleeting, but like a lotus blooming from a murky pond, it sparks joy for the wary stock pickers.

I like to take a look at earnings before interest and (EBIT) tax margins, as well as revenue growth, to get another take on the quality of the company’s growth. Royal Caribbean Cruises maintained stable EBIT margins over the last year, all while growing revenue 8.2% to US$9.5b. That’s progress.

In the chart below, you can see how the company has grown earnings, and revenue, over time. Click on the chart to see the exact numbers.

NYSE:RCL Income Statement, April 13th 2019
NYSE:RCL Income Statement, April 13th 2019

You don’t drive with your eyes on the rear-view mirror, so you might be more interested in this free report showing analyst forecasts for Royal Caribbean Cruises’s future profits.

Are Royal Caribbean Cruises Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?

Since Royal Caribbean Cruises has a market capitalization of US$25b, we wouldn’t expect insiders to hold a large percentage of shares. But we do take comfort from the fact that they are investors in the company. Indeed, they have a glittering mountain of wealth invested in it, currently valued at US$269m. I would find that kind of skin in the game quite encouraging, if I owned shares, since it would ensure that the leaders of the company would also experience my success, or failure, with the stock.

Should You Add Royal Caribbean Cruises To Your Watchlist?

Royal Caribbean Cruises’s earnings per share have taken off like a rocket aimed right at the moon. That sort of growth is nothing short of eye-catching, and the large investment held by insiders certainly brightens my view of the company. The hope is, of course, that the strong growth marks a fundamental improvement in the business economics. So to my mind Royal Caribbean Cruises is worth putting on your watchlist; after all, shareholders do well when the market underestimates fast growing companies. While we’ve looked at the quality of the earnings, we haven’t yet done any work to value the stock. So if you like to buy cheap, you may want to check if Royal Caribbean Cruises is trading on a high P/E or a low P/E, relative to its industry.

Of course, you can do well (sometimes) buying stocks that are not growing earnings and do not have insiders buying shares. But as a growth investor I always like to check out companies that do have those features. You can access a free list of them here.

Please note the insider transactions discussed in this article refer to reportable transactions in the relevant jurisdiction

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If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.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.