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If You Had Bought Acceleron Pharma (NASDAQ:XLRN) Shares Three Years Ago You'd Have Made 36%

Simply Wall St

Investors can buy low cost index fund if they want to receive the average market return. But if you invest in individual stocks, some are likely to underperform. Unfortunately for shareholders, while the Acceleron Pharma Inc. (NASDAQ:XLRN) share price is up 36% in the last three years, that falls short of the market return. Zooming in, the stock is up a respectable 14% in the last year.

View our latest analysis for Acceleron Pharma

Because Acceleron Pharma 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. As you can imagine, fast revenue growth, when maintained, often leads to fast profit growth.

Acceleron Pharma actually saw its revenue drop by 30% per year over three years. The falling revenue is arguably somewhat reflected in the lacklustre return of 11% per year over three years, which falls short of the market return. As a general rule we don't like it when a loss-making company isn't even growing revenue.

Depicted in the graphic below, you'll see revenue and earnings over time. If you want more detail, you can click on the chart itself.

NasdaqGM:XLRN Income Statement, April 15th 2019

We're pleased to report that the CEO is remunerated more modestly than most CEOs at similarly capitalized companies. It's always worth keeping an eye on CEO pay, but a more important question is whether the company will grow earnings throughout the years. So we recommend checking out this free report showing consensus forecasts

A Different Perspective

It's good to see that Acceleron Pharma has rewarded shareholders with a total shareholder return of 14% in the last twelve months. That gain is better than the annual TSR over five years, which is 3.3%. Therefore it seems like sentiment around the company has been positive lately. In the best case scenario, this may hint at some real business momentum, implying that now could be a great time to delve deeper. You might want to assess this data-rich visualization of its earnings, revenue and cash flow.

If you are like me, then you will not want to miss this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying.

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