U.S. Markets closed

Easy Come, Easy Go: How Nostrum Oil & Gas (LON:NOG) Shareholders Got Unlucky And Saw 93% Of Their Cash Evaporate

Simply Wall St

Want to participate in a short research study? Help shape the future of investing tools and you could win a $250 gift card!

Long term investing works well, but it doesn't always work for each individual stock. It hits us in the gut when we see fellow investors suffer a loss. Imagine if you held Nostrum Oil & Gas PLC (LON:NOG) for half a decade as the share price tanked 93%. We also note that the stock has performed poorly over the last year, with the share price down 71%. The falls have accelerated recently, with the share price down 45% in the last three months.

We really hope anyone holding through that price crash has a diversified portfolio. Even when you lose money, you don't have to lose the lesson.

See our latest analysis for Nostrum Oil & Gas

Because Nostrum Oil & Gas is loss-making, we think the market is probably more focussed on revenue and revenue growth, at least for now. Shareholders of unprofitable companies usually expect strong revenue growth. That's because it's hard to be confident a company will be sustainable if revenue growth is negligible, and it never makes a profit.

In the last five years Nostrum Oil & Gas saw its revenue shrink by 20% per year. That's definitely a weaker result than most pre-profit companies report. So it's not altogether surprising to see the share price down 41% per year in the same time period. We don't think this is a particularly promising picture. Ironically, that behavior could create an opportunity for the contrarian investor - but only if there are good reasons to predict a brighter future.

The chart below shows how revenue and earnings have changed with time, (if you click on the chart you can see the actual values).

LSE:NOG Income Statement, June 25th 2019

We like that insiders have been buying shares in the last twelve months. Having said that, most people consider earnings and revenue growth trends to be a more meaningful guide to the business. So we recommend checking out this free report showing consensus forecasts

A Different Perspective

Investors in Nostrum Oil & Gas had a tough year, with a total loss of 71%, against a market gain of about 2.5%. However, keep in mind that even the best stocks will sometimes underperform the market over a twelve month period. Regrettably, last year's performance caps off a bad run, with the shareholders facing a total loss of 41% per year over five years. Generally speaking long term share price weakness can be a bad sign, though contrarian investors might want to research the stock in hope of a turnaround. If you want to research this stock further, the data on insider buying is an obvious place to start. You can click here to see who has been buying shares - and the price they paid.

Nostrum Oil & Gas is not the only stock that insiders are buying. For those who like to find winning investments this free list of growing companies with recent insider purchasing, could be just the ticket.

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

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.