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Reflecting on Piedmont Office Realty Trust's (NYSE:PDM) Share Price Returns Over The Last Three Years

Simply Wall St

Piedmont Office Realty Trust, Inc. (NYSE:PDM) shareholders should be happy to see the share price up 13% in the last quarter. But that cannot eclipse the less-than-impressive returns over the last three years. After all, the share price is down 17% in the last three years, significantly under-performing the market.

Check out our latest analysis for Piedmont Office Realty Trust

There is no denying that markets are sometimes efficient, but prices do not always reflect underlying business performance. 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.

Although the share price is down over three years, Piedmont Office Realty Trust actually managed to grow EPS by 97% per year in that time. Given the share price reaction, one might suspect that EPS is not a good guide to the business performance during the period (perhaps due to a one-off loss or gain). Alternatively, growth expectations may have been unreasonable in the past.

It's worth taking a look at other metrics, because the EPS growth doesn't seem to match with the falling share price.

We note that the dividend seems healthy enough, so that probably doesn't explain the share price drop. Revenue has been pretty flat over three years, so that isn't an obvious reason shareholders would sell. So it might be worth looking at how revenue growth over time, in greater detail.

You can see how earnings and revenue have changed over time in the image below (click on the chart to see the exact values).

earnings-and-revenue-growth
earnings-and-revenue-growth

It's good to see that there was some significant insider buying in the last three months. That's a positive. On the other hand, we think the revenue and earnings trends are much more meaningful measures of the business. You can see what analysts are predicting for Piedmont Office Realty Trust in this interactive graph of future profit estimates.

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, Piedmont Office Realty Trust's TSR for the last 3 years was -3.2%, which exceeds the share price return mentioned earlier. The dividends paid by the company have thusly boosted the total shareholder return.

A Different Perspective

Investors in Piedmont Office Realty Trust had a tough year, with a total loss of 10% (including dividends), against a market gain of about 19%. However, keep in mind that even the best stocks will sometimes underperform the market over a twelve month period. Longer term investors wouldn't be so upset, since they would have made 3.0%, each year, over five years. If the fundamental data continues to indicate long term sustainable growth, the current sell-off could be an opportunity worth considering. It's always interesting to track share price performance over the longer term. But to understand Piedmont Office Realty Trust better, we need to consider many other factors. To that end, you should learn about the 4 warning signs we've spotted with Piedmont Office Realty Trust (including 2 which is are a bit concerning) .

Piedmont Office Realty Trust 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. 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.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team@simplywallst.com.