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Computer Programs and Systems (NASDAQ:CPSI) shareholders have earned a 8.4% CAGR over the last five years

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The main point of investing for the long term is to make money. Furthermore, you'd generally like to see the share price rise faster than the market. But Computer Programs and Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CPSI) has fallen short of that second goal, with a share price rise of 38% over five years, which is below the market return. On a brighter note, more newer shareholders are probably rather content with the 36% share price gain over twelve months.

Let's take a look at the underlying fundamentals over the longer term, and see if they've been consistent with shareholders returns.

See our latest analysis for Computer Programs and Systems

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 last half decade, Computer Programs and Systems became profitable. That's generally thought to be a genuine positive, so we would expect to see an increasing share price.

You can see how EPS has changed over time in the image below (click on the chart to see the exact values).

earnings-per-share-growth
earnings-per-share-growth

It is of course excellent to see how Computer Programs and Systems has grown profits over the years, but the future is more important for shareholders. If you are thinking of buying or selling Computer Programs and Systems stock, you should check out this FREE detailed report on its balance sheet.

What about the Total Shareholder Return (TSR)?

Investors should note that there's a difference between Computer Programs and Systems' total shareholder return (TSR) and its share price change, which we've covered above. 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 Computer Programs and Systems' TSR of 50% over the last 5 years is better than the share price return.

A Different Perspective

Computer Programs and Systems shareholders have received returns of 36% over twelve months, which isn't far from the general market return. Most would be happy with a gain, and it helps that the year's return is actually better than the average return over five years, which was 8%. It is possible that management foresight will bring growth well into the future, even if the share price slows down. It's always interesting to track share price performance over the longer term. But to understand Computer Programs and Systems better, we need to consider many other factors. Take risks, for example - Computer Programs and Systems has 2 warning signs we think you should be aware of.

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 US exchanges.

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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