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Despite the downward trend in earnings at Sempra (NYSE:SRE) the stock rises 7.1%, bringing five-year gains to 55%

Simply Wall St ·  {{timeTz}}

If you buy and hold a stock for many years, you'd hope to be making a profit. Better yet, you'd like to see the share price move up more than the market average. Unfortunately for shareholders, while the Sempra (NYSE:SRE) share price is up 33% in the last five years, that's less than the market return. Looking at the last year alone, the stock is up 8.7%.

On the back of a solid 7-day performance, let's check what role the company's fundamentals have played in driving long term shareholder returns.

Check out our latest analysis for Sempra

To paraphrase Benjamin Graham: Over the short term the market is a voting machine, but over the long term it's a weighing machine. 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.

Sempra's earnings per share are down 12% per year, despite strong share price performance over five years.

Essentially, it doesn't seem likely that investors are focused on EPS. Since the change in EPS doesn't seem to correlate with the change in share price, it's worth taking a look at other metrics.

In contrast revenue growth of 4.1% per year is probably viewed as evidence that Sempra is growing, a real positive. In that case, the company may be sacrificing current earnings per share to drive growth.

The company's revenue and earnings (over time) are depicted in the image below (click to see the exact numbers).

NYSE:SRE Earnings and Revenue Growth June 26th 2022

Sempra is well known by investors, and plenty of clever analysts have tried to predict the future profit levels. If you are thinking of buying or selling Sempra stock, you should check out this free report showing analyst consensus estimates for future profits.

What About Dividends?

As well as measuring the share price return, investors should also consider the total shareholder return (TSR). Whereas the share price return only reflects the change in the share price, the TSR includes the value of dividends (assuming they were reinvested) and the benefit of any discounted capital raising or spin-off. So for companies that pay a generous dividend, the TSR is often a lot higher than the share price return. In the case of Sempra, it has a TSR of 55% for the last 5 years. That exceeds its share price return that we previously mentioned. This is largely a result of its dividend payments!

A Different Perspective

It's good to see that Sempra has rewarded shareholders with a total shareholder return of 12% in the last twelve months. And that does include the dividend. That gain is better than the annual TSR over five years, which is 9%. Therefore it seems like sentiment around the company has been positive lately. Given the share price momentum remains strong, it might be worth taking a closer look at the stock, lest you miss an opportunity. 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 5 warning signs for Sempra (of which 2 are significant!) you should know about.

But note: Sempra may not be the best stock to buy. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies with past earnings growth (and further growth forecast).

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.

This presentation is for informational and educational use only and is not a recommendation or endorsement of any particular investment or investment strategy. Investment information provided in this content is general in nature, strictly for illustrative purposes, and may not be appropriate for all investors. It is provided without respect to individual investors’ financial sophistication, financial situation, investment objectives, investing time horizon, or risk tolerance. You should consider the appropriateness of this information having regard to your relevant personal circumstances before making any investment decisions. Past investment performance does not indicate or guarantee future success. Returns will vary, and all investments carry risks, including loss of principal.


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