The truth is that if you invest for long enough, you're going to end up with some losing stocks. But the last three years have been particularly tough on longer term Willdan Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:WLDN) shareholders. Unfortunately, they have held through a 53% decline in the share price in that time. And the ride hasn't got any smoother in recent times over the last year, with the price 50% lower in that time. Shareholders have had an even rougher run lately, with the share price down 40% in the last 90 days.
Since shareholders are down over the longer term, lets look at the underlying fundamentals over the that time and see if they've been consistent with returns.
Because Willdan Group made a loss in the last twelve months, we think the market is probably more focussed on revenue and revenue growth, at least for now. Shareholders of unprofitable companies usually expect strong revenue growth. As you can imagine, fast revenue growth, when maintained, often leads to fast profit growth.
Over the last three years, Willdan Group's revenue dropped 4.7% per year. That's not what investors generally want to see. The share price decline of 15% compound, over three years, is understandable given the company doesn't have profits to boast of, and revenue is moving in the wrong direction. Having said that, if growth is coming in the future, now may be the low ebb for the company. We don't generally like to own companies that lose money and can't grow revenues. But any company is worth looking at when it makes a maiden profit.
The image below shows how earnings and revenue have tracked over time (if you click on the image you can see greater detail).
This free interactive report on Willdan Group's balance sheet strength is a great place to start, if you want to investigate the stock further.
A Different Perspective
We regret to report that Willdan Group shareholders are down 50% for the year. Unfortunately, that's worse than the broader market decline of 20%. Having said that, it's inevitable that some stocks will be oversold in a falling market. The key is to keep your eyes on the fundamental developments. Unfortunately, last year's performance may indicate unresolved challenges, given that it was worse than the annualised loss of 8% over the last half decade. Generally speaking long term share price weakness can be a bad sign, though contrarian investors might want to research the stock in hope of a turnaround. 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. Case in point: We've spotted 3 warning signs for Willdan Group you should be aware of, and 1 of them can't be ignored.
If you like to buy stocks alongside management, then you might just love this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on US exchanges.
Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.
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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