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Did You Participate In Any Of Pennon Group's (LON:PNN) Respectable 51% Return?

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Simply Wall St
·3 min read
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By buying an index fund, you can roughly match the market return with ease. But if you pick the right individual stocks, you could make more than that. For example, Pennon Group Plc (LON:PNN) shareholders have seen the share price rise 30% over three years, well in excess of the market decline (20%, not including dividends). However, more recent returns haven't been as impressive as that, with the stock returning just 18% in the last year , including dividends .

View our latest analysis for Pennon Group

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 imperfect but simple way to consider how the market perception of a company has shifted is to compare the change in the earnings per share (EPS) with the share price movement.

During the three years of share price growth, Pennon Group actually saw its earnings per share (EPS) drop 11% per year.

This means it's unlikely the market is judging the company based on earnings growth. Given this situation, it makes sense to look at other metrics too.

Interestingly, the dividend has increased over time; so that may have given the share price a boost. Sometimes yield-chasing investors will flock to a company if they think the dividend can grow over time.

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

earnings-and-revenue-growth
earnings-and-revenue-growth

If you are thinking of buying or selling Pennon Group stock, you should check out this FREE detailed report on its balance sheet.

What About Dividends?

As well as measuring the share price return, investors should also consider the total shareholder return (TSR). The TSR incorporates the value of any spin-offs or discounted capital raisings, along with any dividends, based on the assumption that the dividends are reinvested. So for companies that pay a generous dividend, the TSR is often a lot higher than the share price return. We note that for Pennon Group the TSR over the last 3 years was 51%, which is better than the share price return mentioned above. This is largely a result of its dividend payments!

A Different Perspective

It's good to see that Pennon Group has rewarded shareholders with a total shareholder return of 18% in the last twelve months. Of course, that includes the dividend. Since the one-year TSR is better than the five-year TSR (the latter coming in at 10% per year), it would seem that the stock's performance has improved in recent times. Someone with an optimistic perspective could view the recent improvement in TSR as indicating that the business itself is getting better with time. While it is well worth considering the different impacts that market conditions can have on the share price, there are other factors that are even more important. Like risks, for instance. Every company has them, and we've spotted 3 warning signs for Pennon Group (of which 2 are concerning!) you should know about.

But note: Pennon Group may not be the best stock to buy. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies with past earnings growth (and further growth forecast).

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

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. 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.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team@simplywallst.com.