As an investor its worth striving to ensure your overall portfolio beats the market average. But in any portfolio, there are likely to be some stocks that fall short of that benchmark. Unfortunately, that's been the case for longer term China Animation Characters Company Limited (HKG:1566) shareholders, since the share price is down 39% in the last three years, falling well short of the market return of around 15%. And more recent buyers are having a tough time too, with a drop of 25% in the last year.
In his essay The Superinvestors of Graham-and-Doddsville Warren Buffett described how share prices do not always rationally reflect the value of a business. One flawed but reasonable way to assess how sentiment around a company has changed is to compare the earnings per share (EPS) with the share price.
China Animation Characters saw its EPS decline at a compound rate of 21% per year, over the last three years. In comparison the 15% compound annual share price decline isn't as bad as the EPS drop-off. So the market may not be too worried about the EPS figure, at the moment -- or it may have previously priced some of the drop in.
The image below shows how EPS has tracked over time (if you click on the image you can see greater detail).
It's probably worth noting we've seen significant insider buying in the last quarter, which we consider a positive. That said, we think earnings and revenue growth trends are even more important factors to consider. Dive deeper into the earnings by checking this interactive graph of China Animation Characters's earnings, revenue and cash flow.
A Different Perspective
The last twelve months weren't great for China Animation Characters shares, which cost holders 24% , including dividends , while the market was up about 4.1%. However, keep in mind that even the best stocks will sometimes underperform the market over a twelve month period. The three-year loss of 14% per year isn't as bad as the last twelve months, suggesting that the company has not been able to convince the market it has solved its problems. We would be wary of buying into a company with unsolved problems, although some investors will buy into struggling stocks if they believe the price is sufficiently attractive. It is all well and good that insiders have been buying shares, but we suggest you check here to see what price insiders were buying at.
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 HK exchanges.
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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.