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Do JKX Oil & Gas's (LON:JKX) Earnings Warrant Your Attention?

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Like a puppy chasing its tail, some new investors often chase 'the next big thing', even if that means buying 'story stocks' without revenue, let alone profit. Unfortunately, high risk investments often have little probability of ever paying off, and many investors pay a price to learn their lesson.

So if you're like me, you might be more interested in profitable, growing companies, like JKX Oil & Gas (LON:JKX). While profit is not necessarily a social good, it's easy to admire a business that can consistently produce it. While a well funded company may sustain losses for years, unless its owners have an endless appetite for subsidizing the customer, it will need to generate a profit eventually, or else breathe its last breath.

View our latest analysis for JKX Oil & Gas

JKX Oil & Gas's Earnings Per Share Are Growing.

If a company can keep growing earnings per share (EPS) long enough, its share price will eventually follow. Therefore, there are plenty of investors who like to buy shares in companies that are growing EPS. I, for one, am blown away by the fact that JKX Oil & Gas has grown EPS by 48% per year, over the last three years. That sort of growth never lasts long, but like a shooting star it is well worth watching when it happens.

I like to see top-line growth as an indication that growth is sustainable, and I look for a high earnings before interest and taxation (EBIT) margin to point to a competitive moat (though some companies with low margins also have moats). JKX Oil & Gas's EBIT margins have actually improved by 9.9 percentage points in the last year, to reach 34%, but, on the flip side, revenue was down 22%. That's not ideal.

In the chart below, you can see how the company has grown earnings, and revenue, over time. Click on the chart to see the exact numbers.

earnings-and-revenue-history
earnings-and-revenue-history

JKX Oil & Gas isn't a huge company, given its market capitalization of UK£70m. That makes it extra important to check on its balance sheet strength.

Are JKX Oil & Gas Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?

It makes me feel more secure owning shares in a company if insiders also own shares, thusly more closely aligning our interests. So it is good to see that JKX Oil & Gas insiders have a significant amount of capital invested in the stock. To be specific, they have US$9.0m worth of shares. That shows significant buy-in, and may indicate conviction in the business strategy. Those holdings account for over 13% of the company; visible skin in the game.

Does JKX Oil & Gas Deserve A Spot On Your Watchlist?

JKX Oil & Gas's earnings have taken off like any random crypto-currency did, back in 2017. That sort of growth is nothing short of eye-catching, and the large investment held by insiders certainly brightens my view of the company. The hope is, of course, that the strong growth marks a fundamental improvement in the business economics. So yes, on this short analysis I do think it's worth considering JKX Oil & Gas for a spot on your watchlist. It's still necessary to consider the ever-present spectre of investment risk. We've identified 3 warning signs with JKX Oil & Gas , and understanding these should be part of your investment process.

You can invest in any company you want. But if you prefer to focus on stocks that have demonstrated insider buying, here is a list of companies with insider buying in the last three months.

Please note the insider transactions discussed in this article refer to reportable transactions in the relevant jurisdiction.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. 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.

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