For many, the main point of investing is to generate higher returns than the overall market. But every investor is virtually certain to have both over-performing and under-performing stocks. At this point some shareholders may be questioning their investment in Legend Holdings Corporation (HKG:3396), since the last five years saw the share price fall 53%. And it's not just long term holders hurting, because the stock is down 29% in the last year.
Now let's have a look at the company's fundamentals, and see if the long term shareholder return has matched the performance of the underlying business.
See our latest analysis for Legend Holdings
In his essay The Superinvestors of Graham-and-Doddsville Warren Buffett described how share prices do not always rationally reflect the value of a business. One way to examine how market sentiment has changed over time is to look at the interaction between a company's share price and its earnings per share (EPS).
During the unfortunate half decade during which the share price slipped, Legend Holdings actually saw its earnings per share (EPS) improve by 4.8% per year. Given the share price reaction, one might suspect that EPS is not a good guide to the business performance during the period (perhaps due to a one-off loss or gain). Alternatively, growth expectations may have been unreasonable in the past.
By glancing at these numbers, we'd posit that the the market had expectations of much higher growth, five years ago. Looking to other metrics might better explain the share price change.
We note that the dividend has remained healthy, so that wouldn't really explain the share price drop. It's not immediately clear to us why the stock price is down but further research might provide some answers.
The graphic below depicts how earnings and revenue have changed over time (unveil the exact values by clicking on the image).SEHK:3396 Earnings and Revenue Growth August 30th 2022
We know that Legend Holdings has improved its bottom line lately, but what does the future have in store? So it makes a lot of sense to check out what analysts think Legend Holdings will earn in the future (free profit forecasts).
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. Arguably, the TSR gives a more comprehensive picture of the return generated by a stock. In the case of Legend Holdings, it has a TSR of -45% 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
We regret to report that Legend Holdings shareholders are down 26% for the year (even including dividends). Unfortunately, that's worse than the broader market decline of 17%. Having said that, it's inevitable that some stocks will be oversold in a falling market. The key is to keep your eyes on the fundamental developments. Unfortunately, last year's performance may indicate unresolved challenges, given that it was worse than the annualised loss of 8% over the last half decade. Generally speaking long term share price weakness can be a bad sign, though contrarian investors might want to research the stock in hope of a turnaround. 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 - Legend Holdings has 2 warning signs (and 1 which is a bit unpleasant) we think you should know about.
Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a peek at this free list of companies we expect will grow earnings.
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on HK exchanges .
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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.