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If You Like EPS Growth Then Check Out AFH Financial Group (LON:AFHP) Before It's Too Late

Simply Wall St

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Like a puppy chasing its tail, some new investors often chase 'the next big thing', even if that means buying 'story stocks' without revenue, let alone profit. Unfortunately, high risk investments often have little probability of ever paying off, and many investors pay a price to learn their lesson.

In contrast to all that, I prefer to spend time on companies like AFH Financial Group (LON:AFHP), which has not only revenues, but also profits. While that doesn't make the shares worth buying at any price, you can't deny that successful capitalism requires profit, eventually. Conversely, a loss-making company is yet to prove itself with profit, and eventually the sweet milk of external capital may run sour.

Check out our latest analysis for AFH Financial Group

How Fast Is AFH Financial Group Growing?

The market is a voting machine in the short term, but a weighing machine in the long term, so share price follows earnings per share (EPS) eventually. That means EPS growth is considered a real positive by most successful long-term investors. Who among us would not applaud AFH Financial Group's stratospheric annual EPS growth of 44%, compound, over the last three years? Growth that fast may well be fleeting, but like a lotus blooming from a murky pond, it sparks joy for the wary stock pickers.

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. AFH Financial Group shareholders can take confidence from the fact that EBIT margins are up from 14% to 17%, and revenue is growing. Ticking those two boxes is a good sign of growth, in my book.

In the chart below, you can see how the company has grown earnings, and revenue, over time. For finer detail, click on the image.

AIM:AFHP Income Statement, July 18th 2019

In investing, as in life, the future matters more than the past. So why not check out this free interactive visualization of AFH Financial Group's forecast profits?

Are AFH Financial Group Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?

I like company leaders to have some skin in the game, so to speak, because it increases alignment of incentives between the people running the business, and its true owners. So it is good to see that AFH Financial Group insiders have a significant amount of capital invested in the stock. To be specific, they have UK£37m worth of shares. That's a lot of money, and no small incentive to work hard. That amounts to 24% of the company, demonstrating a degree of high-level alignment with shareholders.

Should You Add AFH Financial Group To Your Watchlist?

AFH Financial Group's earnings have taken off like any random crypto-currency did, back in 2017. That sort of growth is nothing short of eye-catching, and the large investment held by insiders certainly brightens my view of the company. 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 AFH Financial Group for a spot on your watchlist. Now, you could try to make up your mind on AFH Financial Group by focusing on just these factors, or you could also consider how its price-to-earnings ratio compares to other companies in its industry.

Of course, you can do well (sometimes) buying stocks that are not growing earnings and do not have insiders buying shares. But as a growth investor I always like 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

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.