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If You Had Bought Fortis (TSE:FTS) Stock Three Years Ago, You Could Pocket A 32% Gain Today

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·3 min read
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  • FORFF
  • FTS

By buying an index fund, you can roughly match the market return with ease. But many of us dare to dream of bigger returns, and build a portfolio ourselves. For example, Fortis Inc. (TSE:FTS) shareholders have seen the share price rise 32% over three years, well in excess of the market return (18%, not including dividends). However, more recent returns haven't been as impressive as that, with the stock returning just 9.1% in the last year , including dividends .

Check out our latest analysis for Fortis

While the efficient markets hypothesis continues to be taught by some, it has been proven that markets are over-reactive dynamic systems, and investors are not always rational. 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, Fortis achieved compound earnings per share growth of 4.4% per year. In comparison, the 10% per year gain in the share price outpaces the EPS growth. This suggests that, as the business progressed over the last few years, it gained the confidence of market participants. It is quite common to see investors become enamoured with a business, after a few years of solid progress.

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

earnings-per-share-growth
earnings-per-share-growth

We consider it positive that insiders have made significant purchases in the last year. Having said that, most people consider earnings and revenue growth trends to be a more meaningful guide to the business. Dive deeper into the earnings by checking this interactive graph of Fortis' earnings, revenue and cash flow.

What About Dividends?

When looking at investment returns, it is important to consider the difference between total shareholder return (TSR) and share price return. Whereas the share price return only reflects the change in the share price, the TSR includes the value of dividends (assuming they were reinvested) and the benefit of any discounted capital raising or spin-off. It's fair to say that the TSR gives a more complete picture for stocks that pay a dividend. We note that for Fortis the TSR over the last 3 years was 47%, which is better than the share price return mentioned above. This is largely a result of its dividend payments!

A Different Perspective

Fortis provided a TSR of 9.1% over the last twelve months. But that return falls short of the market. It's probably a good sign that the company has an even better long term track record, having provided shareholders with an annual TSR of 9% over five years. It may well be that this is a business worth popping on the watching, given the continuing positive reception, over time, from the market. It's always interesting to track share price performance over the longer term. But to understand Fortis better, we need to consider many other factors. Consider for instance, the ever-present spectre of investment risk. We've identified 1 warning sign with Fortis , and understanding them should be part of your investment process.

If you like to buy stocks alongside management, then you might just love this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).

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

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. 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.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.