U.S. Markets open in 6 hrs 5 mins

Introducing Independence Contract Drilling (NYSE:ICD), The Stock That Tanked 89%

Simply Wall St

Long term investing is the way to go, but that doesn't mean you should hold every stock forever. It hits us in the gut when we see fellow investors suffer a loss. Imagine if you held Independence Contract Drilling, Inc. (NYSE:ICD) for half a decade as the share price tanked 89%. And it's not just long term holders hurting, because the stock is down 78% in the last year. Shareholders have had an even rougher run lately, with the share price down 24% in the last 90 days.

While a drop like that is definitely a body blow, money isn't as important as health and happiness.

See our latest analysis for Independence Contract Drilling

Independence Contract Drilling isn't currently profitable, so most analysts would look to revenue growth to get an idea of how fast the underlying business is growing. Generally speaking, companies without profits are expected to grow revenue every year, and at a good clip. That's because it's hard to be confident a company will be sustainable if revenue growth is negligible, and it never makes a profit.

Over five years, Independence Contract Drilling grew its revenue at 19% per year. That's well above most other pre-profit companies. So on the face of it we're really surprised to see the share price has averaged a fall of 35% each year, in the same time period. You'd have to assume the market is worried that profits won't come soon enough. While there might be an opportunity here, you'd want to take a close look at the balance sheet strength.

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

NYSE:ICD Income Statement, October 3rd 2019

We like that insiders have been buying shares in the last twelve months. Having said that, most people consider earnings and revenue growth trends to be a more meaningful guide to the business. This free report showing analyst forecasts should help you form a view on Independence Contract Drilling

A Different Perspective

We regret to report that Independence Contract Drilling shareholders are down 78% for the year. Unfortunately, that's worse than the broader market decline of 0.06%. However, it could simply be that the share price has been impacted by broader market jitters. It might be worth keeping an eye on the fundamentals, in case there's a good opportunity. Unfortunately, last year's performance may indicate unresolved challenges, given that it was worse than the annualised loss of 35% 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. Investors who like to make money usually check up on insider purchases, such as the price paid, and total amount bought. You can find out about the insider purchases of Independence Contract Drilling by clicking this link.

Independence Contract Drilling is not the only stock that insiders are buying. For those who like to find winning investments this free list of growing companies with recent insider purchasing, could be just the ticket.

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.