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Those who invested in Natural Alternatives International (NASDAQ:NAII) five years ago are up 31%

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Natural Alternatives International, Inc. (NASDAQ:NAII) shareholders might be concerned after seeing the share price drop 12% in the last quarter. On the bright side the share price is up over the last half decade. Unfortunately its return of 31% is below the market return of 99%. Unfortunately not all shareholders will have held it for the long term, so spare a thought for those caught in the 28% decline over the last twelve months.

With that in mind, it's worth seeing if the company's underlying fundamentals have been the driver of long term performance, or if there are some discrepancies.

Check out our latest analysis for Natural Alternatives International

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

During five years of share price growth, Natural Alternatives International actually saw its EPS drop 1.1% per year.

By glancing at these numbers, we'd posit that the decline in earnings per share is not representative of how the business has changed over the years. Since the change in EPS doesn't seem to correlate with the change in share price, it's worth taking a look at other metrics.

On the other hand, Natural Alternatives International's revenue is growing nicely, at a compound rate of 6.3% over the last five years. In that case, the company may be sacrificing current earnings per share to drive growth.

The company's revenue and earnings (over time) are depicted in the image below (click to see the exact numbers).

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

Take a more thorough look at Natural Alternatives International's financial health with this free report on its balance sheet.

A Different Perspective

Natural Alternatives International shareholders are down 28% for the year, but the market itself is up 1.4%. 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 6%, 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. I find it very interesting to look at share price over the long term as a proxy for business performance. But to truly gain insight, we need to consider other information, too. Take risks, for example - Natural Alternatives International has 3 warning signs (and 2 which are concerning) we think you should know about.

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 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.