Even the best stock pickers will make plenty of bad investments. And there's no doubt that China Green Agriculture, Inc. (NYSE:CGA) stock has had a really bad year. In that relatively short period, the share price has plunged 55%. Longer term investors have fared much better, since the share price is up 21% in three years. Even worse, it's down 26% in about a month, which isn't fun at all. But this could be related to poor market conditions -- stocks are down 13% in the same time.
With the stock having lost 16% in the past week, it's worth taking a look at business performance and seeing if there's any red flags.
China Green Agriculture wasn't profitable in the last twelve months, it is unlikely we'll see a strong correlation between its share price and its earnings per share (EPS). Arguably revenue is our next best option. Generally speaking, companies without profits are expected to grow revenue every year, and at a good clip. That's because it's hard to be confident a company will be sustainable if revenue growth is negligible, and it never makes a profit.
In the last year China Green Agriculture saw its revenue grow by 8.4%. While that may seem decent it isn't great considering the company is still making a loss. It's likely this muted growth has contributed to the share price decline of 55% in the last year. Like many holders, we really want to see better revenue growth in companies that lose money. Of course, the market can be too impatient at times. Why not take a closer look at this one so you're ready to pounce if growth does accelerate.
The company's revenue and earnings (over time) are depicted in the image below (click to see the exact numbers).
It's probably worth noting that the CEO is paid less than the median at similar sized companies. It's always worth keeping an eye on CEO pay, but a more important question is whether the company will grow earnings throughout the years. Dive deeper into the earnings by checking this interactive graph of China Green Agriculture's earnings, revenue and cash flow.
A Different Perspective
We regret to report that China Green Agriculture shareholders are down 55% for the year. Unfortunately, that's worse than the broader market decline of 9.4%. However, it could simply be that the share price has been impacted by broader market jitters. It might be worth keeping an eye on the fundamentals, in case there's a good opportunity. Regrettably, last year's performance caps off a bad run, with the shareholders facing a total loss of 8% per year over five years. We realise that Baron Rothschild has said investors should "buy when there is blood on the streets", but we caution that investors should first be sure they are buying a high quality business. 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. Like risks, for instance. Every company has them, and we've spotted 4 warning signs for China Green Agriculture (of which 1 is concerning!) 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.
Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.
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.