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For beginners, it can seem like a good idea (and an exciting prospect) to buy a company that tells a good story to investors, even if it completely lacks a track record of revenue and profit. And in their study titled Who Falls Prey to the Wolf of Wall Street?' Leuz et. al. found that it is 'quite common' for investors to lose money by buying into 'pump and dump' schemes.
In contrast to all that, I prefer to spend time on companies like Nucor (NYSE:NUE), which has not only revenues, but also profits. While profit is not necessarily a social good, it's easy to admire a business that can consistently produce it. In comparison, loss making companies act like a sponge for capital - but unlike such a sponge they do not always produce something when squeezed.
Nucor's Earnings Per Share Are Growing.
If you believe that markets are even vaguely efficient, then over the long term you'd expect a company's share price to follow its earnings per share (EPS). That makes EPS growth an attractive quality for any company. I, for one, am blown away by the fact that Nucor has grown EPS by 38% per year, over the last three years. That sort of growth never lasts long, but like a shooting star it is well worth watching when it happens.
I like to take a look at earnings before interest and (EBIT) tax margins, as well as revenue growth, to get another take on the quality of the company's growth. The good news is that Nucor is growing revenues, and EBIT margins improved by 15.2 percentage points to 22%, over the last year. Ticking those two boxes is a good sign of growth, in my book.
You can take a look at the company's revenue and earnings growth trend, in the chart below. To see the actual numbers, click on the chart.
Fortunately, we've got access to analyst forecasts of Nucor's future profits. You can do your own forecasts without looking, or you can take a peek at what the professionals are predicting.
Are Nucor Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?
Since Nucor has a market capitalization of US$29b, we wouldn't expect insiders to hold a large percentage of shares. But we do take comfort from the fact that they are investors in the company. Notably, they have an enormous stake in the company, worth US$197m. I would find that kind of skin in the game quite encouraging, if I owned shares, since it would ensure that the leaders of the company would also experience my success, or failure, with the stock.
Does Nucor Deserve A Spot On Your Watchlist?
Nucor's earnings per share have taken off like a rocket aimed right at the moon. That EPS growth certainly has my attention, and the large insider ownership only serves to further stoke my interest. At times fast EPS growth is a sign the business has reached an inflection point; and I do like those. So yes, on this short analysis I do think it's worth considering Nucor for a spot on your watchlist. Before you take the next step you should know about the 2 warning signs for Nucor (1 is potentially serious!) that we have uncovered.
Although Nucor certainly looks good to me, I would like it more if insiders were buying up shares. If you like to see insider buying, too, then this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying, could be exactly what you're looking for.
Please note the insider transactions discussed in this article refer to reportable transactions in the relevant jurisdiction.
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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