Want to participate in a research study? Help shape the future of investing tools and earn a $60 gift card!
The worst result, after buying shares in a company (assuming no leverage), would be if you lose all the money you put in. But when you pick a company that is really flourishing, you can make more than 100%. For example, the Ciena Corporation (NYSE:CIEN) share price has soared 105% in the last three years. That sort of return is as solid as granite.
To paraphrase Benjamin Graham: Over the short term the market is a voting machine, but over the long term it's a weighing machine. 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.
Ciena was able to grow its EPS at 94% per year over three years, sending the share price higher. This EPS growth is higher than the 27% average annual increase in the share price. So it seems investors have become more cautious about the company, over time.
You can see how EPS has changed over time in the image below (click on the chart to see the exact values).
It is of course excellent to see how Ciena has grown profits over the years, but the future is more important for shareholders. This free interactive report on Ciena's balance sheet strength is a great place to start, if you want to investigate the stock further.
A Different Perspective
We're pleased to report that Ciena shareholders have received a total shareholder return of 49% over one year. That's better than the annualised return of 14% over half a decade, implying that the company is doing better recently. Someone with an optimistic perspective could view the recent improvement in TSR as indicating that the business itself is getting better with time. If you would like to research Ciena in more detail then you might want to take a look at whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in the company.
If you are like me, then you will not want to miss this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.