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Some CIT Group (NYSE:CIT) Shareholders Are Down 24%

Simply Wall St

It's easy to match the overall market return by buying an index fund. But if you buy individual stocks, you can do both better or worse than that. Unfortunately the CIT Group Inc. (NYSE:CIT) share price slid 24% over twelve months. That falls noticeably short of the market return of around -1.1%. On the other hand, the stock is actually up 14% over three years. Unfortunately the share price momentum is still quite negative, with prices down 19% in thirty days. Importantly, this could be a market reaction to the recently released financial results. You can check out the latest numbers in our company report.

See our latest analysis for CIT Group

While markets are a powerful pricing mechanism, share prices reflect investor sentiment, not just underlying business performance. 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.

Even though the CIT Group share price is down over the year, its EPS actually improved. It could be that the share price was previously over-hyped. The divergence between the EPS and the share price is quite notable, during the year. So it's easy to justify a look at some other metrics.

On the other hand, we're certainly perturbed by the 7.2% decline in CIT Group's revenue. Many investors see falling revenue as a likely precursor to lower earnings, so this could well explain the weak share price.

The graphic below depicts how earnings and revenue have changed over time (unveil the exact values by clicking on the image).

NYSE:CIT Income Statement, August 26th 2019

It's good to see that there was some significant insider buying in the last three months. That's a positive. On the other hand, we think the revenue and earnings trends are much more meaningful measures of the business. This free report showing analyst forecasts should help you form a view on CIT Group

What about the Total Shareholder Return (TSR)?

We'd be remiss not to mention the difference between CIT Group's total shareholder return (TSR) and its share price return. The TSR is a return calculation that accounts for the value of cash dividends (assuming that any dividend received was reinvested) and the calculated value of any discounted capital raisings and spin-offs. Its history of dividend payouts mean that CIT Group's TSR, which was a 22% drop over the last year, was not as bad as the share price return.

A Different Perspective

While the broader market lost about 1.1% in the twelve months, CIT Group shareholders did even worse, losing 22% (even including dividends). However, it could simply be that the share price has been impacted by broader market jitters. It might be worth keeping an eye on the fundamentals, in case there's a good opportunity. Regrettably, last year's performance caps off a bad run, with the shareholders facing a total loss of 1.4% per year over five years. 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. Investors who like to make money usually check up on insider purchases, such as the price paid, and total amount bought. You can find out about the insider purchases of CIT Group by clicking this link.

If you like to buy stocks alongside management, then you might just love this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).

Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on US exchanges.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.