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Investors are often guided by the idea of discovering 'the next big thing', even if that means buying 'story stocks' without any revenue, let alone profit. But as Peter Lynch said in One Up On Wall Street, 'Long shots almost never pay off.' While a well funded company may sustain losses for years, it will need to generate a profit eventually, or else investors will move on and the company will wither away.
So if this idea of high risk and high reward doesn't suit, you might be more interested in profitable, growing companies, like Imdex (ASX:IMD). While profit isn't the sole metric that should be considered when investing, it's worth recognising businesses that can consistently produce it.
How Quickly Is Imdex Increasing Earnings Per Share?
If you believe that markets are even vaguely efficient, then over the long term you'd expect a company's share price to follow its earnings per share (EPS) outcomes. So it makes sense that experienced investors pay close attention to company EPS when undertaking investment research. Shareholders will be happy to know that Imdex's EPS has grown 18% each year, compound, over three years. As a general rule, we'd say that if a company can keep up that sort of growth, shareholders will be beaming.
One way to double-check a company's growth is to look at how its revenue, and earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) margins are changing. The music to the ears of Imdex shareholders is that EBIT margins have grown from 11% to 20% in the last 12 months and revenues are on an upwards trend as well. Ticking those two boxes is a good sign of growth, in our book.
You can take a look at the company's revenue and earnings growth trend, in the chart below. For finer detail, click on the image.
Fortunately, we've got access to analyst forecasts of Imdex's future profits. You can do your own forecasts without looking, or you can take a peek at what the professionals are predicting.
Are Imdex Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?
It's pleasing to see company leaders with putting their money on the line, so to speak, because it increases alignment of incentives between the people running the business, and its true owners. Shareholders will be pleased by the fact that insiders own Imdex shares worth a considerable sum. As a matter of fact, their holding is valued at AU$27m. That's a lot of money, and no small incentive to work hard. Even though that's only about 3.6% of the company, it's enough money to indicate alignment between the leaders of the business and ordinary shareholders.
Should You Add Imdex To Your Watchlist?
For growth investors, Imdex's raw rate of earnings growth is a beacon in the night. This EPS growth rate is something the company should be proud of, and so it's no surprise that insiders are holding on to a considerable chunk of shares. On the balance of its merits, solid EPS growth and company insiders who are aligned with the shareholders would indicate a business that is worthy of further research. While we've looked at the quality of the earnings, we haven't yet done any work to value the stock. So if you like to buy cheap, you may want to check if Imdex is trading on a high P/E or a low P/E, relative to its industry.
The beauty of investing is that you can invest in almost 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.
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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