Those holding Xingye Wulian Service Group Co. Ltd. (HKG:9916) shares would be relieved that the share price has rebounded 29% in the last thirty days, but it needs to keep going to repair the recent damage it has caused to investor portfolios. Not all shareholders will be feeling jubilant, since the share price is still down a very disappointing 34% in the last twelve months.
Even after such a large jump in price, Xingye Wulian Service Group may still be sending bullish signals at the moment with its price-to-earnings (or "P/E") ratio of 5.4x, since almost half of all companies in Hong Kong have P/E ratios greater than 10x and even P/E's higher than 19x are not unusual. Nonetheless, we'd need to dig a little deeper to determine if there is a rational basis for the reduced P/E.
For example, consider that Xingye Wulian Service Group's financial performance has been poor lately as its earnings have been in decline. One possibility is that the P/E is low because investors think the company won't do enough to avoid underperforming the broader market in the near future. However, if this doesn't eventuate then existing shareholders may be feeling optimistic about the future direction of the share price.
View our latest analysis for Xingye Wulian Service GroupWe don't have analyst forecasts, but you can see how recent trends are setting up the company for the future by checking out our free report on Xingye Wulian Service Group's earnings, revenue and cash flow.
Does Growth Match The Low P/E?
The only time you'd be truly comfortable seeing a P/E as low as Xingye Wulian Service Group's is when the company's growth is on track to lag the market.
Retrospectively, the last year delivered a frustrating 27% decrease to the company's bottom line. The last three years don't look nice either as the company has shrunk EPS by 21% in aggregate. So unfortunately, we have to acknowledge that the company has not done a great job of growing earnings over that time.
In contrast to the company, the rest of the market is expected to grow by 24% over the next year, which really puts the company's recent medium-term earnings decline into perspective.
In light of this, it's understandable that Xingye Wulian Service Group's P/E would sit below the majority of other companies. However, we think shrinking earnings are unlikely to lead to a stable P/E over the longer term, which could set up shareholders for future disappointment. Even just maintaining these prices could be difficult to achieve as recent earnings trends are already weighing down the shares.
The Bottom Line On Xingye Wulian Service Group's P/E
Xingye Wulian Service Group's stock might have been given a solid boost, but its P/E certainly hasn't reached any great heights. While the price-to-earnings ratio shouldn't be the defining factor in whether you buy a stock or not, it's quite a capable barometer of earnings expectations.
As we suspected, our examination of Xingye Wulian Service Group revealed its shrinking earnings over the medium-term are contributing to its low P/E, given the market is set to grow. At this stage investors feel the potential for an improvement in earnings isn't great enough to justify a higher P/E ratio. Unless the recent medium-term conditions improve, they will continue to form a barrier for the share price around these levels.
Don't forget that there may be other risks. For instance, we've identified 2 warning signs for Xingye Wulian Service Group that you should be aware of.
If these risks are making you reconsider your opinion on Xingye Wulian Service Group, explore our interactive list of high quality stocks to get an idea of what else is out there.
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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.