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It might be of some concern to shareholders to see the GMS Inc. (NYSE:GMS) share price down 14% in the last month. In contrast, the return over three years has been impressive. In fact, the share price is up a full 160% compared to three years ago. After a run like that some may not be surprised to see prices moderate. Only time will tell if there is still too much optimism currently reflected in the share price.
While the stock has fallen 9.7% this week, it's worth focusing on the longer term and seeing if the stocks historical returns have been driven by the underlying fundamentals.
There is no denying that markets are sometimes efficient, but prices do not always reflect underlying business performance. One way to examine how market sentiment has changed over time is to look at the interaction between a company's share price and its earnings per share (EPS).
During three years of share price growth, GMS achieved compound earnings per share growth of 42% per year. We don't think it is entirely coincidental that the EPS growth is reasonably close to the 37% average annual increase in the share price. That suggests that the market sentiment around the company hasn't changed much over that time. Quite to the contrary, the share price has arguably reflected the EPS growth.
You can see how EPS has changed over time in the image below (click on the chart to see the exact values).
It is of course excellent to see how GMS has grown profits over the years, but the future is more important for shareholders. You can see how its balance sheet has strengthened (or weakened) over time in this free interactive graphic.
A Different Perspective
It's good to see that GMS has rewarded shareholders with a total shareholder return of 53% in the last twelve months. Since the one-year TSR is better than the five-year TSR (the latter coming in at 11% per year), it would seem that the stock's performance has improved in recent times. Given the share price momentum remains strong, it might be worth taking a closer look at the stock, lest you miss an opportunity. It's always interesting to track share price performance over the longer term. But to understand GMS better, we need to consider many other factors. To that end, you should learn about the 2 warning signs we've spotted with GMS (including 1 which is potentially serious) .
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 US exchanges.
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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.