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If You Had Bought Tapestry (NYSE:TPR) Stock A Year Ago, You'd Be Sitting On A 44% Loss, Today

Simply Wall St

Passive investing in an index fund is a good way to ensure your own returns roughly match the overall market. Active investors aim to buy stocks that vastly outperform the market - but in the process, they risk under-performance. Unfortunately the Tapestry, Inc. (NYSE:TPR) share price slid 44% over twelve months. That's well bellow the market return of 5.2%. We note that it has not been easy for shareholders over three years, either; the share price is down 32% in that time. Furthermore, it's down 17% in about a quarter. That's not much fun for holders.

See our latest analysis for Tapestry

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 imperfect but simple way to consider how the market perception of a company has shifted is to compare the change in the earnings per share (EPS) with the share price movement.

During the unfortunate twelve months during which the Tapestry share price fell, it actually saw its earnings per share (EPS) improve by 60%. It could be that the share price was previously over-hyped.

The divergence between the EPS and the share price is quite notable, during the year. But we might find some different metrics explain the share price movements better.

Tapestry's dividend seems healthy to us, so we doubt that the yield is a concern for the market. From what we can see, revenue is pretty flat, so that doesn't really explain the share price drop. Unless, of course, the market was expecting a revenue uptick.

The image below shows how earnings and revenue have tracked over time (if you click on the image you can see greater detail).

NYSE:TPR Income Statement, October 9th 2019

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. If you are thinking of buying or selling Tapestry stock, you should check out this free report showing analyst profit forecasts.

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. So for companies that pay a generous dividend, the TSR is often a lot higher than the share price return. As it happens, Tapestry's TSR for the last year was -41%, which exceeds the share price return mentioned earlier. This is largely a result of its dividend payments!

A Different Perspective

Tapestry shareholders are down 41% for the year (even including dividends) , but the market itself is up 5.2%. Even the share prices of good stocks drop sometimes, but we want to see improvements in the fundamental metrics of a business, before getting too interested. Unfortunately, last year's performance may indicate unresolved challenges, given that it was worse than the annualised loss of 3.6% over the last half decade. We realise that Buffett has said investors should 'buy when there is blood on the streets', but we caution that investors should first be sure they are buying a high quality businesses. If you want to research this stock further, the data on insider buying is an obvious place to start. You can click here to see who has been buying shares - and the price they paid.

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 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.