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It hasn't been the best quarter for Lincoln Educational Services Corporation (NASDAQ:LINC) shareholders, since the share price has fallen 14% in that time. But that doesn't undermine the rather lovely longer-term return, if you measure over the last three years. Indeed, the share price is up a very strong 188% in that time. After a run like that some may not be surprised to see prices moderate. If the business can perform well for years to come, then the recent drop could be an opportunity.
So let's assess the underlying fundamentals over the last 3 years and see if they've moved in lock-step with shareholder returns.
While markets are a powerful pricing mechanism, share prices reflect investor sentiment, not just underlying business performance. One imperfect but simple way to consider how the market perception of a company has shifted is to compare the change in the earnings per share (EPS) with the share price movement.
During three years of share price growth, Lincoln Educational Services moved from a loss to profitability. Given the importance of this milestone, it's not overly surprising that the share price has increased strongly.
The graphic below depicts how EPS has changed over time (unveil the exact values by clicking on the image).
We know that Lincoln Educational Services has improved its bottom line over the last three years, but what does the future have in store? It might be well worthwhile taking a look at our free report on how its financial position has changed over time.
A Different Perspective
Lincoln Educational Services shareholders are down 19% over twelve months, which isn't far from the market return of -20%. Longer term investors wouldn't be so upset, since they would have made 15%, each year, over five years. If the stock price has been impacted by changing sentiment, rather than deteriorating business conditions, it could spell opportunity. 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 example, we've discovered 2 warning signs for Lincoln Educational Services that you should be aware of before investing here.
We will like Lincoln Educational Services better if we see some big insider buys. While we wait, check out this free list of growing companies with considerable, recent, 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.
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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.