When you buy shares in a company, it's worth keeping in mind the possibility that it could fail, and you could lose your money. But when you pick a company that is really flourishing, you can make more than 100%. Long term Comba Telecom Systems Holdings Limited (HKG:2342) shareholders would be well aware of this, since the stock is up 140% in five years. It's also good to see the share price up 78% over the last quarter.
Because Comba Telecom Systems Holdings made a loss in the last twelve months, we think the market is probably more focussed on revenue and revenue growth, at least for now. When a company doesn't make profits, we'd generally expect to see good revenue growth. Some companies are willing to postpone profitability to grow revenue faster, but in that case one does expect good top-line growth.
Over the last half decade Comba Telecom Systems Holdings's revenue has actually been trending down at about 5.1% per year. Given that scenario, we wouldn't have expected the share price to rise 19% per year, but that's what it did. It just goes to show tht the market is forward looking, and it's not always easy to predict the future based on past trends. Still, this situation makes us a little wary of the stock.
The image below shows how earnings and revenue have tracked over time (if you click on the image you can see greater detail).
We like that insiders have been buying shares in the last twelve months. Even so, future earnings will be far more important to whether current shareholders make money. So it makes a lot of sense to check out what analysts think Comba Telecom Systems Holdings will earn in the future (free profit forecasts).
What About Dividends?
As well as measuring the share price return, investors should also consider the total shareholder return (TSR). 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. So for companies that pay a generous dividend, the TSR is often a lot higher than the share price return. In the case of Comba Telecom Systems Holdings, it has a TSR of 152% for the last 5 years. That exceeds its share price return that we previously mentioned. And there's no prize for guessing that the dividend payments largely explain the divergence!
A Different Perspective
We're pleased to report that Comba Telecom Systems Holdings shareholders have received a total shareholder return of 74% over one year. Of course, that includes the dividend. That gain is better than the annual TSR over five years, which is 20%. Therefore it seems like sentiment around the company has been positive lately. Someone with an optimistic perspective could view the recent improvement in TSR as indicating that the business itself is getting better with time. It's always interesting to track share price performance over the longer term. But to understand Comba Telecom Systems Holdings better, we need to consider many other factors. Case in point: We've spotted 2 warning signs for Comba Telecom Systems Holdings you should be aware of.
Comba Telecom Systems Holdings is not the only stock insiders are buying. So take a peek at this free list of growing companies with insider buying.
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on HK exchanges.
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