If EPS Growth Is Important To You, Costco Wholesale (NASDAQ:COST) Presents An Opportunity
Investors are often guided by the idea of discovering 'the next big thing', even if that means buying 'story stocks' without any revenue, let alone profit. But as Peter Lynch said in One Up On Wall Street, 'Long shots almost never pay off.' While a well funded company may sustain losses for years, it will need to generate a profit eventually, or else investors will move on and the company will wither away.
If this kind of company isn't your style, you like companies that generate revenue, and even earn profits, then you may well be interested in Costco Wholesale (NASDAQ:COST). While profit isn't the sole metric that should be considered when investing, it's worth recognising businesses that can consistently produce it.
See our latest analysis for Costco Wholesale
How Fast Is Costco Wholesale Growing?
If a company can keep growing earnings per share (EPS) long enough, its share price should eventually follow. That makes EPS growth an attractive quality for any company. Costco Wholesale managed to grow EPS by 16% per year, over three years. That's a good rate of growth, if it can be sustained.
It's often helpful to take a look at earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) margins, as well as revenue growth, to get another take on the quality of the company's growth. Costco Wholesale maintained stable EBIT margins over the last year, all while growing revenue 14% to US$231b. That's progress.
The chart below shows how the company's bottom and top lines have progressed over time. For finer detail, click on the image.
The trick, as an investor, is to find companies that are going to perform well in the future, not just in the past. While crystal balls don't exist, you can check our visualization of consensus analyst forecasts for Costco Wholesale's future EPS 100% free.
Are Costco Wholesale Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?
Owing to the size of Costco Wholesale, we wouldn't expect insiders to hold a significant proportion of the company. But thanks to their investment in the company, it's pleasing to see that there are still incentives to align their actions with the shareholders. We note that their impressive stake in the company is worth US$555m. This comes in at 0.2% of shares in the company, which is a fair amount of a business of this size. So despite their percentage holding being low, company management still have plenty of reasons to deliver the best outcomes for investors.
It's good to see that insiders are invested in the company, but are remuneration levels reasonable? Well, based on the CEO pay, you'd argue that they are indeed. Our analysis has discovered that the median total compensation for the CEOs of companies like Costco Wholesale, with market caps over US$8.0b, is about US$12m.
Costco Wholesale's CEO took home a total compensation package worth US$9.9m in the year leading up to August 2022. That seems pretty reasonable, especially given it's below the median for similar sized companies. While the level of CEO compensation shouldn't be the biggest factor in how the company is viewed, modest remuneration is a positive, because it suggests that the board keeps shareholder interests in mind. It can also be a sign of good governance, more generally.
Should You Add Costco Wholesale To Your Watchlist?
One positive for Costco Wholesale is that it is growing EPS. That's nice to see. The growth of EPS may be the eye-catching headline for Costco Wholesale, but there's more to bring joy for shareholders. Boasting both modest CEO pay and considerable insider ownership, you'd argue this one is worthy of the watchlist, at least. Don't forget that there may still be risks. For instance, we've identified 2 warning signs for Costco Wholesale (1 doesn't sit too well with us) you should be aware of.
There's always the possibility of doing well buying stocks that are not growing earnings and do not have insiders buying shares. But for those who consider these important metrics, we encourage you to check out companies that do have those features. You can access a free list of them here.
Please note the insider transactions discussed in this article refer to reportable transactions in the relevant jurisdiction.
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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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