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If You Had Bought Exacompta Clairefontaine (EPA:EXAC) Shares Five Years Ago You'd Have Made 75%

Simply Wall St

Stock pickers are generally looking for stocks that will outperform the broader market. And while active stock picking involves risks (and requires diversification) it can also provide excess returns. To wit, the Exacompta Clairefontaine share price has climbed 75% in five years, easily topping the market return of 40% (ignoring dividends).

View our latest analysis for Exacompta Clairefontaine

To quote Buffett, 'Ships will sail around the world but the Flat Earth Society will flourish. There will continue to be wide discrepancies between price and value in the marketplace...' 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, Exacompta Clairefontaine managed to grow its earnings per share at 13% a year. This EPS growth is reasonably close to the 12% average annual increase in the share price. Therefore one could conclude that sentiment towards the shares hasn't morphed very much. In fact, the share price seems to largely reflect the EPS growth.

The graphic below depicts how EPS has changed over time (unveil the exact values by clicking on the image).

ENXTPA:EXAC Past and Future Earnings, October 5th 2019

Dive deeper into Exacompta Clairefontaine's key metrics by checking this interactive graph of Exacompta Clairefontaine'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. It's fair to say that the TSR gives a more complete picture for stocks that pay a dividend. As it happens, Exacompta Clairefontaine's TSR for the last 5 years was 94%, which exceeds the share price return mentioned earlier. This is largely a result of its dividend payments!

A Different Perspective

While the broader market gained around 3.2% in the last year, Exacompta Clairefontaine shareholders lost 1.2% (even including dividends) . However, keep in mind that even the best stocks will sometimes underperform the market over a twelve month period. On the bright side, long term shareholders have made money, with a gain of 14% per year over half a decade. It could be that the recent sell-off is an opportunity, so it may be worth checking the fundamental data for signs of a long term growth trend. Before forming an opinion on Exacompta Clairefontaine you might want to consider these 3 valuation metrics.

But note: Exacompta Clairefontaine may not be the best stock to buy. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies with past earnings growth (and further growth forecast).

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