The worst result, after buying shares in a company (assuming no leverage), would be if you lose all the money you put in. But on a lighter note, a good company can see its share price rise well over 100%. One great example is Gladstone Land Corporation (NASDAQ:LAND) which saw its share price drive 269% higher over five years. Also pleasing for shareholders was the 26% gain in the last three months.
The past week has proven to be lucrative for Gladstone Land investors, so let's see if fundamentals drove the company's five-year performance.
Given that Gladstone Land 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.
For the last half decade, Gladstone Land can boast revenue growth at a rate of 26% per year. Even measured against other revenue-focussed companies, that's a good result. So it's not entirely surprising that the share price reflected this performance by increasing at a rate of 30% per year, in that time. This suggests the market has well and truly recognized the progress the business has made. Gladstone Land seems like a high growth stock - so growth investors might want to add it to their watchlist.
The image below shows how earnings and revenue have tracked over time (if you click on the image you can see greater detail).
If you are thinking of buying or selling Gladstone Land stock, you should check out this FREE detailed report on its balance sheet.
What About Dividends?
When looking at investment returns, it is important to consider the difference between total shareholder return (TSR) and share price return. The TSR is a return calculation that accounts for the value of cash dividends (assuming that any dividend received was reinvested) and the calculated value of any discounted capital raisings and spin-offs. Arguably, the TSR gives a more comprehensive picture of the return generated by a stock. As it happens, Gladstone Land's TSR for the last 5 years was 343%, 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
It's good to see that Gladstone Land has rewarded shareholders with a total shareholder return of 98% in the last twelve months. That's including the dividend. That's better than the annualised return of 35% over half a decade, implying that the company is doing better recently. In the best case scenario, this may hint at some real business momentum, implying that now could be a great time to delve deeper. 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. For instance, we've identified 3 warning signs for Gladstone Land that you should be aware of.
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.
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.