Those Who Purchased NewLink Genetics (NASDAQ:NLNK) Shares Five Years Ago Have A 93% Loss To Show For It

While it may not be enough for some shareholders, we think it is good to see the NewLink Genetics Corporation (NASDAQ:NLNK) share price up 12% in a single quarter. But that doesn’t change the fact that the returns over the last half decade have been stomach churning. In fact, the share price has tumbled down a mountain to land 93% lower after that period. The recent bounce might mean the long decline is over, but we are not confident. The million dollar question is whether the company can justify a long term recovery.

We really hope anyone holding through that price crash has a diversified portfolio. Even when you lose money, you don’t have to lose the lesson.

View our latest analysis for NewLink Genetics

Given that NewLink Genetics didn’t make a profit in the last twelve months, we’ll focus on revenue growth to form a quick view of its business development. Generally speaking, companies without profits are expected to grow revenue every year, and at a good clip. As you can imagine, fast revenue growth, when maintained, often leads to fast profit growth.

Over half a decade NewLink Genetics reduced its trailing twelve month revenue by 21% for each year. That puts it in an unattractive cohort, to put it mildly. So it’s not that strange that the share price dropped 41% per year in that period. We don’t think this is a particularly promising picture. Of course, the poor performance could mean the market has been too severe selling down. That can happen.

The graphic below shows how revenue and earnings have changed as management guided the business forward. If you want to see cashflow, you can click on the chart.

NasdaqGM:NLNK Income Statement, April 17th 2019
NasdaqGM:NLNK Income Statement, April 17th 2019

Balance sheet strength is crucual. It might be well worthwhile taking a look at our free report on how its financial position has changed over time.

A Different Perspective

While the broader market gained around 8.2% in the last year, NewLink Genetics shareholders lost 63%. However, keep in mind that even the best stocks will sometimes underperform the market over a twelve month period. Unfortunately, last year’s performance may indicate unresolved challenges, given that it was worse than the annualised loss of 41% over the last half decade. We realise that Buffett 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 businesses. Shareholders might want to examine this detailed historical graph of past earnings, revenue and cash flow.

Of course NewLink Genetics may not be the best stock to buy. So you may wish to see this free collection of growth stocks.

Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on US exchanges.

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.

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.

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