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If You Had Bought Aristocrat Leisure (ASX:ALL) Shares Five Years Ago You'd Have Made 394%

Simply Wall St

Buying shares in the best businesses can build meaningful wealth for you and your family. While the best companies are hard to find, but they can generate massive returns over long periods. To wit, the Aristocrat Leisure Limited (ASX:ALL) share price has soared 394% over five years. This just goes to show the value creation that some businesses can achieve.

See our latest analysis for Aristocrat Leisure

While markets are a powerful pricing mechanism, share prices reflect investor sentiment, not just underlying business performance. By comparing earnings per share (EPS) and share price changes over time, we can get a feel for how investor attitudes to a company have morphed over time.

Over half a decade, Aristocrat Leisure managed to grow its earnings per share at 35% a year. So the EPS growth rate is rather close to the annualized share price gain of 38% per year. That suggests that the market sentiment around the company hasn't changed much over that time. Indeed, it would appear the share price is reacting to the EPS.

You can see below how EPS has changed over time (discover the exact values by clicking on the image).

ASX:ALL Past and Future Earnings, October 15th 2019

We consider it positive that insiders have made significant purchases in the last year. Even so, future earnings will be far more important to whether current shareholders make money. Dive deeper into the earnings by checking this interactive graph of Aristocrat Leisure's earnings, revenue and cash flow.

What About Dividends?

It is important to consider the total shareholder return, as well as the share price return, for any given stock. The TSR incorporates the value of any spin-offs or discounted capital raisings, along with any dividends, based on the assumption that the dividends are reinvested. Arguably, the TSR gives a more comprehensive picture of the return generated by a stock. As it happens, Aristocrat Leisure's TSR for the last 5 years was 441%, which exceeds the share price return mentioned earlier. And there's no prize for guessing that the dividend payments largely explain the divergence!

A Different Perspective

Aristocrat Leisure shareholders gained a total return of 10% during the year. Unfortunately this falls short of the market return. On the bright side, the longer term returns (running at about 40% a year, over half a decade) look better. Maybe the share price is just taking a breather while the business executes on its growth strategy. Investors who like to make money usually check up on insider purchases, such as the price paid, and total amount bought. You can find out about the insider purchases of Aristocrat Leisure by clicking this link.

Aristocrat Leisure is not the only stock insiders are buying. So take a peek at this free list of growing companies with insider buying.

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