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If You Had Bought Cape Lambert Resources (ASX:CFE) Stock Five Years Ago, You'd Be Sitting On A 94% Loss, Today

Simply Wall St

Long term investing is the way to go, but that doesn't mean you should hold every stock forever. We really hate to see fellow investors lose their hard-earned money. Anyone who held Cape Lambert Resources Limited (ASX:CFE) for five years would be nursing their metaphorical wounds since the share price dropped 94% in that time. And we doubt long term believers are the only worried holders, since the stock price has declined 86% over the last twelve months. Furthermore, it's down 71% in about a quarter. That's not much fun for holders.

We really feel for shareholders in this scenario. It's a good reminder of the importance of diversification, and it's worth keeping in mind there's more to life than money, anyway.

See our latest analysis for Cape Lambert Resources

With just AU$371,512 worth of revenue in twelve months, we don't think the market considers Cape Lambert Resources to have proven its business plan. We can't help wondering why it's publicly listed so early in its journey. Are venture capitalists not interested? So it seems shareholders are too busy dreaming about the progress to come than dwelling on the current (lack of) revenue. It seems likely some shareholders believe that Cape Lambert Resources will find or develop a valuable new mine before too long.

Companies that lack both meaningful revenue and profits are usually considered high risk. There was already a significant chance that they would need more money for business development, and indeed they recently put themselves at the mercy of capital markets and raised equity. So the share price itself impacts the value of the shares (as it determines the cost of capital). While some such companies do very well over the long term, others become hyped up by promoters before eventually falling back down to earth, and going bankrupt (or being recapitalized). It certainly is a dangerous place to invest, as Cape Lambert Resources investors might realise.

Our data indicates that Cape Lambert Resources had more in total liabilities than it had cash, when it last reported. That put it in the highest risk category, according to our analysis. But with the share price diving 44% per year, over 5 years , it's probably fair to say that some shareholders no longer believe the company will succeed or they are worried about dilution with the recent cash injection. The image below shows how Cape Lambert Resources's balance sheet has changed over time; if you want to see the precise values, simply click on the image.

ASX:CFE Historical Debt May 6th 2020

Of course, the truth is that it is hard to value companies without much revenue or profit. Would it bother you if insiders were selling the stock? I'd like that just about as much as I like to drink milk and fruit juice mixed together. You can click here to see if there are insiders selling.

A Different Perspective

We regret to report that Cape Lambert Resources shareholders are down 86% for the year. Unfortunately, that's worse than the broader market decline of 11%. Having said that, it's inevitable that some stocks will be oversold in a falling market. The key is to keep your eyes on the fundamental developments. Unfortunately, last year's performance may indicate unresolved challenges, given that it was worse than the annualised loss of 44% over the last half decade. Generally speaking long term share price weakness can be a bad sign, though contrarian investors might want to research the stock in hope of a turnaround. While it is well worth considering the different impacts that market conditions can have on the share price, there are other factors that are even more important. Even so, be aware that Cape Lambert Resources is showing 5 warning signs in our investment analysis , and 2 of those make us uncomfortable...

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 AU exchanges.

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.

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. Thank you for reading.