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Unfortunately for some shareholders, the BT Brands, Inc. (NASDAQ:BTBD) share price has dived 25% in the last thirty days, prolonging recent pain. To make matters worse, the recent drop has wiped out a year's worth of gains with the share price now back where it started a year ago.
In spite of the heavy fall in price, BT Brands may still be sending very bearish signals at the moment with a price-to-earnings (or "P/E") ratio of 28.2x, since almost half of all companies in the United States have P/E ratios under 16x and even P/E's lower than 9x are not unusual. Although, it's not wise to just take the P/E at face value as there may be an explanation why it's so lofty.
BT Brands has been doing a decent job lately as it's been growing earnings at a reasonable pace. It might be that many expect the reasonable earnings performance to beat most other companies over the coming period, which has increased investors’ willingness to pay up for the stock. You'd really hope so, otherwise you're paying a pretty hefty price for no particular reason.
Want the full picture on earnings, revenue and cash flow for the company? Then our free report on BT Brands will help you shine a light on its historical performance.
Does Growth Match The High P/E?
The only time you'd be truly comfortable seeing a P/E as steep as BT Brands' is when the company's growth is on track to outshine the market decidedly.
Taking a look back first, we see that the company managed to grow earnings per share by a handy 2.8% last year. This was backed up an excellent period prior to see EPS up by 1,406% in total over the last three years. Accordingly, shareholders would have probably welcomed those medium-term rates of earnings growth.
This is in contrast to the rest of the market, which is expected to grow by 10% over the next year, materially lower than the company's recent medium-term annualised growth rates.
In light of this, it's understandable that BT Brands' P/E sits above the majority of other companies. It seems most investors are expecting this strong growth to continue and are willing to pay more for the stock.
The Bottom Line On BT Brands' P/E
A significant share price dive has done very little to deflate BT Brands' very lofty P/E. It's argued the price-to-earnings ratio is an inferior measure of value within certain industries, but it can be a powerful business sentiment indicator.
We've established that BT Brands maintains its high P/E on the strength of its recent three-year growth being higher than the wider market forecast, as expected. At this stage investors feel the potential for a deterioration in earnings isn't great enough to justify a lower P/E ratio. Unless the recent medium-term conditions change, they will continue to provide strong support to the share price.
And what about other risks? Every company has them, and we've spotted 4 warning signs for BT Brands (of which 1 is a bit concerning!) you should know about.
If these risks are making you reconsider your opinion on BT Brands, 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.