For beginners, it can seem like a good idea (and an exciting prospect) to buy a company that tells a good story to investors, even if it currently lacks a track record of revenue and profit. Sometimes these stories can cloud the minds of investors, leading them to invest with their emotions rather than on the merit of good company fundamentals. A loss-making company is yet to prove itself with profit, and eventually the inflow of external capital may dry up.
If this kind of company isn't your style, you like companies that generate revenue, and even earn profits, then you may well be interested in RPM International (NYSE:RPM). Even if this company is fairly valued by the market, investors would agree that generating consistent profits will continue to provide RPM International with the means to add long-term value to shareholders.
How Fast Is RPM International Growing?
If you believe that markets are even vaguely efficient, then over the long term you'd expect a company's share price to follow its earnings per share (EPS) outcomes. So it makes sense that experienced investors pay close attention to company EPS when undertaking investment research. It certainly is nice to see that RPM International has managed to grow EPS by 20% per year over three years. As a general rule, we'd say that if a company can keep up that sort of growth, shareholders will be beaming.
Top-line growth is a great indicator that growth is sustainable, and combined with a high earnings before interest and taxation (EBIT) margin, it's a great way for a company to maintain a competitive advantage in the market. RPM International maintained stable EBIT margins over the last year, all while growing revenue 14% to US$7.0b. That's encouraging news for the company!
In the chart below, you can see how the company has grown earnings and revenue, over time. Click on the chart to see the exact numbers.
The trick, as an investor, is to find companies that are going to perform well in the future, not just in the past. While crystal balls don't exist, you can check our visualization of consensus analyst forecasts for RPM International's future EPS 100% free.
Are RPM International Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?
Since RPM International has a market capitalisation of US$12b, we wouldn't expect insiders to hold a large percentage of shares. But we are reassured by the fact they have invested in the company. We note that their impressive stake in the company is worth US$168m. Holders should find this level of insider commitment quite encouraging, since it would ensure that the leaders of the company would also experience their success, or failure, with the stock.
While it's always good to see some strong conviction in the company from insiders through heavy investment, it's also important for shareholders to ask if management compensation policies are reasonable. Our quick analysis into CEO remuneration would seem to indicate they are. For companies with market capitalisations over US$8.0b, like RPM International, the median CEO pay is around US$13m.
The RPM International CEO received US$9.1m in compensation for the year ending May 2022. That comes in below the average for similar sized companies and seems pretty reasonable. CEO compensation is hardly the most important aspect of a company to consider, but when it's reasonable, that gives a little more confidence that leadership are looking out for shareholder interests. Generally, arguments can be made that reasonable pay levels attest to good decision-making.
Does RPM International Deserve A Spot On Your Watchlist?
If you believe that share price follows earnings per share you should definitely be delving further into RPM International's strong EPS growth. If you still have your doubts, remember too that company insiders have a considerable investment aligning themselves with the shareholders and CEO pay is quite modest compared to similarly sized companiess. Everyone has their own preferences when it comes to investing but it definitely makes RPM International look rather interesting indeed. It is worth noting though that we have found 3 warning signs for RPM International (1 is a bit unpleasant!) that you need to take into consideration.
The beauty of investing is that you can invest in almost any company you want. But if you prefer to focus on stocks that have demonstrated insider buying, here is a list of companies with insider buying in the last three months.
Please note the insider transactions discussed in this article refer to reportable transactions in the relevant jurisdiction.
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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.
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