- Oops!Something went wrong.Please try again later.
When you buy shares in a company, there is always a risk that the price drops to zero. On the other hand, if you find a high quality business to buy (at the right price) you can more than double your money! For example, the Ardagh Group S.A. (NYSE:ARD) share price has soared 123% return in just a single year. It's down 2.3% in the last seven days. Looking back further, the stock price is 44% higher than it was three years ago.
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.
During the last year Ardagh Group saw its earnings per share (EPS) drop below zero. While this may prove temporary, we'd consider it a negative, so we would not have expected to see the share price up. It may be that the company has done well on other metrics.
We think that the revenue growth of 3.6% could have some investors interested. Many businesses do go through a phase where they have to forgo some profits to drive business development, and sometimes its for the best.
The company's revenue and earnings (over time) are depicted in the image below (click to see the exact numbers).
This free interactive report on Ardagh Group's balance sheet strength is a great place to start, if you want to investigate the stock further.
What About Dividends?
As well as measuring the share price return, investors should also consider the total shareholder return (TSR). 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. In the case of Ardagh Group, it has a TSR of 132% for the last year. That exceeds its share price return that we previously mentioned. And there's no prize for guessing that the dividend payments largely explain the divergence!
A Different Perspective
It's nice to see that Ardagh Group shareholders have gained 132% (in total) over the last year. That includes the value of the dividend. So this year's TSR was actually better than the three-year TSR (annualized) of 17%. The improving returns to shareholders suggests the stock is becoming more popular with time. While it is well worth considering the different impacts that market conditions can have on the share price, there are other factors that are even more important. Even so, be aware that Ardagh Group is showing 3 warning signs in our investment analysis , and 1 of those is significant...
If you would prefer to check out another company -- one with potentially superior financials -- then do not miss this free list of companies that have proven they can grow earnings.
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on US 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.