The excitement of investing in a company that can reverse its fortunes is a big draw for some speculators, so even companies that have no revenue, no profit, and a record of falling short, can manage to find investors. But as Peter Lynch said in One Up On Wall Street, 'Long shots almost never pay off.' Loss making companies can act like a sponge for capital - so investors should be cautious that they're not throwing good money after bad.
If this kind of company isn't your style, you like companies that generate revenue, and even earn profits, then you may well be interested in Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN). Now this is not to say that the company presents the best investment opportunity around, but profitability is a key component to success in business.
How Quickly Is Franklin Resources Increasing Earnings Per Share?
If you believe that markets are even vaguely efficient, then over the long term you'd expect a company's share price to follow its earnings per share (EPS) outcomes. That means EPS growth is considered a real positive by most successful long-term investors. Over the last three years, Franklin Resources has grown EPS by 7.0% per year. This may not be setting the world alight, but it does show that EPS is on the upwards trend.
Careful consideration of revenue growth and earnings before interest and taxation (EBIT) margins can help inform a view on the sustainability of the recent profit growth. While we note Franklin Resources achieved similar EBIT margins to last year, revenue grew by a solid 7.1% to US$8.5b. That's encouraging news for the company!
You can take a look at the company's revenue and earnings growth trend, in the chart below. Click on the chart to see the exact numbers.
While we live in the present moment, there's little doubt that the future matters most in the investment decision process. So why not check this interactive chart depicting future EPS estimates, for Franklin Resources?
Are Franklin Resources Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?
Seeing insiders owning a large portion of the shares on issue is often a good sign. Their incentives will be aligned with the investors and there's less of a probability in a sudden sell-off that would impact the share price. So as you can imagine, the fact that Franklin Resources insiders own a significant number of shares certainly is appealing. In fact, they own 43% of the shares, making insiders a very influential shareholder group. This should be a welcoming sign for investors because it suggests that the people making the decisions are also impacted by their choices. at the current share price. That means they have plenty of their own capital riding on the performance of the business!
While it's always good to see some strong conviction in the company from insiders through heavy investment, it's also important for shareholders to ask if management compensation policies are reasonable. Well, based on the CEO pay, you'd argue that they are indeed. The median total compensation for CEOs of companies similar in size to Franklin Resources, with market caps over US$8.0b, is around US$13m.
The Franklin Resources CEO received US$9.9m in compensation for the year ending September 2021. That comes in below the average for similar sized companies and seems pretty reasonable. CEO compensation is hardly the most important aspect of a company to consider, but when it's reasonable, that gives a little more confidence that leadership are looking out for shareholder interests. Generally, arguments can be made that reasonable pay levels attest to good decision-making.
Is Franklin Resources Worth Keeping An Eye On?
One positive for Franklin Resources is that it is growing EPS. That's nice to see. The growth of EPS may be the eye-catching headline for Franklin Resources, but there's more to bring joy for shareholders. Boasting both modest CEO pay and considerable insider ownership, you'd argue this one is worthy of the watchlist, at least. Still, you should learn about the 2 warning signs we've spotted with Franklin Resources (including 1 which makes us a bit uncomfortable).
The beauty of investing is that you can invest in almost any company you want. But if you prefer to focus on stocks that have demonstrated insider buying, here is a list of companies with insider buying in the last three months.
Please note the insider transactions discussed in this article refer to reportable transactions in the relevant jurisdiction.
Valuation is complex, but we're helping make it simple.
Find out whether Franklin Resources is potentially over or undervalued by checking out our comprehensive analysis, which includes fair value estimates, risks and warnings, dividends, insider transactions and financial health.View the Free Analysis
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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.