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Such Is Life: How High Liner Foods (TSE:HLF) Shareholders Saw Their Shares Drop 57%

Simply Wall St

Ideally, your overall portfolio should beat the market average. But the main game is to find enough winners to more than offset the losers At this point some shareholders may be questioning their investment in High Liner Foods Incorporated (TSE:HLF), since the last five years saw the share price fall 57%. Even worse, it's down 8.4% in about a month, which isn't fun at all. This could be related to the recent financial results - you can catch up on the most recent data by reading our company report.

Check out our latest analysis for High Liner Foods

To quote Buffett, 'Ships will sail around the world but the Flat Earth Society will flourish. There will continue to be wide discrepancies between price and value in the marketplace...' By comparing earnings per share (EPS) and share price changes over time, we can get a feel for how investor attitudes to a company have morphed over time.

Looking back five years, both High Liner Foods's share price and EPS declined; the latter at a rate of 19% per year. This fall in the EPS is worse than the 16% compound annual share price fall. So investors might expect EPS to bounce back -- or they may have previously foreseen the EPS decline.

The image below shows how EPS has tracked over time (if you click on the image you can see greater detail).

TSX:HLF Past and Future Earnings, November 13th 2019

This free interactive report on High Liner Foods's earnings, revenue and cash flow 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). Whereas the share price return only reflects the change in the share price, the TSR includes the value of dividends (assuming they were reinvested) and the benefit of any discounted capital raising or spin-off. Arguably, the TSR gives a more comprehensive picture of the return generated by a stock. As it happens, High Liner Foods's TSR for the last 5 years was -48%, which exceeds the share price return mentioned earlier. And there's no prize for guessing that the dividend payments largely explain the divergence!

A Different Perspective

We're pleased to report that High Liner Foods shareholders have received a total shareholder return of 58% over one year. That's including the dividend. There's no doubt those recent returns are much better than the TSR loss of 12% per year over five years. The long term loss makes us cautious, but the short term TSR gain certainly hints at a brighter future. Before spending more time on High Liner Foods it might be wise to click here to see if insiders have been buying or selling shares.

But note: High Liner Foods may not be the best stock to buy. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies with past earnings growth (and further growth forecast).

Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on CA 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.