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Does Wajax (TSE:WJX) Deserve A Spot On Your Watchlist?

Simply Wall St

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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. But the reality is that when a company loses money each year, for long enough, its investors will usually take their share of those losses.

So if you're like me, you might be more interested in profitable, growing companies, like Wajax (TSE:WJX). While profit is not necessarily a social good, it's easy to admire a business than 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.

View our latest analysis for Wajax

How Fast Is Wajax Growing Its Earnings Per Share?

In the last three years Wajax's earnings per share took off like a rocket; fast, and from a low base. So the actual rate of growth doesn't tell us much. Thus, it makes sense to focus on more recent growth rates, instead. Wajax boosted its trailing twelve month EPS from CA$1.55 to CA$1.74, in the last year. That's a 12% gain; respectable growth in the broader scheme of things.

Careful consideration of revenue growth and earnings before interest and taxation (EBIT) margins can help inform a view on the sustainability of the recent profit growth. Wajax maintained stable EBIT margins over the last year, all while growing revenue 13% to CA$1.5b. That's progress.

In the chart below, you can see how the company has grown earnings, and revenue, over time. To see the actual numbers, click on the chart.

TSX:WJX Income Statement, July 5th 2019

Of course the knack is to find stocks that have their best days in the future, not in the past. You could base your opinion on past performance, of course, but you may also want to check this interactive graph of professional analyst EPS forecasts for Wajax.

Are Wajax Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?

Like standing at the lookout, surveying the horizon at sunrise, insider buying, for some investors, sparks joy. This view is based on the possibility that stock purchases signal bullishness on behalf of the buyer. Of course, we can never be sure what insiders are thinking, we can only judge their actions.

Any way you look at it Wajax shareholders can gain quiet confidence from the fact that insiders shelled out CA$609k to buy stock, over the last year. When you contrast that with the complete lack of sales, it's easy for shareholders to brim with joyful expectancy. We also note that it was the Chairman of the Board, Robert Dexter, who made the biggest single acquisition, paying CA$164k for shares at about CA$16.43 each.

Should You Add Wajax To Your Watchlist?

One positive for Wajax is that it is growing EPS. That's nice to see. While some companies are struggling to grow EPS, Wajax seems free from that morose affliction. The cherry on top is the insider share purchases, which provide an extra impetus to keep and eye on this stock, at the very least. Of course, just because Wajax is growing does not mean it is undervalued. If you're wondering about the valuation, check out this gauge of its price-to-earnings ratio, as compared to its industry.

The good news is that Wajax is not the only growth stock with insider buying. Here's a list of them... with insider buying in the last three months!

Please note the insider transactions discussed in this article refer to reportable transactions in the relevant jurisdiction

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.