It might be of some concern to shareholders to see the South Port New Zealand Limited (NZSE:SPN) share price down 12% in the last month. But at least the stock is up over the last five years. In that time, it is up 74%, which isn't bad, but is below the market return of 97%.
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...' One way to examine how market sentiment has changed over time is to look at the interaction between a company's share price and its earnings per share (EPS).
Over half a decade, South Port New Zealand managed to grow its earnings per share at 7.9% a year. This EPS growth is slower than the share price growth of 12% per year, over the same period. So it's fair to assume the market has a higher opinion of the business than it did five years ago. That's not necessarily surprising considering the five-year track record of earnings growth.
You can see how EPS has changed over time in the image below (click on the chart to see the exact values).
This free interactive report on South Port New Zealand's earnings, revenue and cash flow is a great place to start, if you want to investigate the stock further.
What About Dividends?
It is important to consider the total shareholder return, as well as the share price return, for any given stock. The TSR incorporates the value of any spin-offs or discounted capital raisings, along with any dividends, based on the assumption that the dividends are reinvested. So for companies that pay a generous dividend, the TSR is often a lot higher than the share price return. As it happens, South Port New Zealand's TSR for the last 5 years was 124%, 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
South Port New Zealand provided a TSR of 3.3% over the last twelve months. Unfortunately this falls short of the market return. It's probably a good sign that the company has an even better long term track record, having provided shareholders with an annual TSR of 18% over five years. It may well be that this is a business worth popping on the watching, given the continuing positive reception, over time, from the market. Before forming an opinion on South Port New Zealand you might want to consider the cold hard cash it pays as a dividend. This free chart tracks its dividend over time.
If you are like me, then you will not want to miss this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying.
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on NZ exchanges.
If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at email@example.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.
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