World Fuel Services Corporation (NYSE:INT) shareholders might be concerned after seeing the share price drop 12% in the last month. But at least the stock is up over the last three years. In that time, it is up 42%, which isn't bad, but not amazing either.
While the efficient markets hypothesis continues to be taught by some, it has been proven that markets are over-reactive dynamic systems, and investors are not always rational. 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, World Fuel Services moved from a loss to profitability. That would generally be considered a positive, so we'd expect the share price to be up.
The company's earnings per share (over time) is depicted in the image below (click to see the exact numbers).
It's probably worth noting we've seen significant insider buying in the last quarter, which we consider a positive. That said, we think earnings and revenue growth trends are even more important factors to consider. It might be well worthwhile taking a look at our free report on World Fuel Services' 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. 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. So for companies that pay a generous dividend, the TSR is often a lot higher than the share price return. As it happens, World Fuel Services' TSR for the last 3 years was 47%, which exceeds the share price return mentioned earlier. And there's no prize for guessing that the dividend payments largely explain the divergence!
A Different Perspective
World Fuel Services shareholders are up 34% for the year (even including dividends). But that was short of the market average. But at least that's still a gain! Over five years the TSR has been a reduction of 6% per year, over five years. So this might be a sign the business has turned its fortunes around. 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. Take risks, for example - World Fuel Services has 2 warning signs we think you should be aware of.
World Fuel Services is not the only stock that insiders are buying. For those who like to find winning investments this free list of growing companies with recent insider purchasing, could be just the ticket.
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on US exchanges.
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