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For many, the main point of investing in the stock market is to achieve spectacular returns. And we've seen some truly amazing gains over the years. For example, the Kulicke and Soffa Industries, Inc. (NASDAQ:KLIC) share price is up a whopping 305% in the last half decade, a handsome return for long term holders. And this is just one example of the epic gains achieved by some long term investors. It's also up 28% in about a month.
After a strong gain in the past week, it's worth seeing if longer term returns have been driven by improving fundamentals.
To paraphrase Benjamin Graham: Over the short term the market is a voting machine, but over the long term it's a weighing machine. One way to examine how market sentiment has changed over time is to look at the interaction between a company's share price and its earnings per share (EPS).
Over half a decade, Kulicke and Soffa Industries managed to grow its earnings per share at 44% a year. The EPS growth is more impressive than the yearly share price gain of 32% over the same period. Therefore, it seems the market has become relatively pessimistic about the company.
The image below shows how EPS has tracked over time (if you click on the image you can see greater detail).
We consider it positive that insiders have made significant purchases in the last year. Having said that, most people consider earnings and revenue growth trends to be a more meaningful guide to the business. Before buying or selling a stock, we always recommend a close examination of historic growth trends, available here..
What About Dividends?
It is important to consider the total shareholder return, as well as the share price return, for any given stock. The TSR is a return calculation that accounts for the value of cash dividends (assuming that any dividend received was reinvested) and the calculated value of any discounted capital raisings and spin-offs. So for companies that pay a generous dividend, the TSR is often a lot higher than the share price return. As it happens, Kulicke and Soffa Industries' TSR for the last 5 years was 332%, which exceeds the share price return mentioned earlier. This is largely a result of its dividend payments!
A Different Perspective
We're pleased to report that Kulicke and Soffa Industries shareholders have received a total shareholder return of 118% over one year. And that does include the dividend. That's better than the annualised return of 34% over half a decade, implying that the company is doing better recently. In the best case scenario, this may hint at some real business momentum, implying that now could be a great time to delve deeper. 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. For instance, we've identified 3 warning signs for Kulicke and Soffa Industries (2 are a bit concerning) that you should be aware of.
Kulicke and Soffa Industries is not the only stock insiders are buying. So take a peek at this free list of growing companies with insider buying.
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. 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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