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Those Who Purchased Tejon Ranch (NYSE:TRC) Shares Five Years Ago Have A 37% Loss To Show For It

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  • TRC

In order to justify the effort of selecting individual stocks, it's worth striving to beat the returns from a market index fund. But the main game is to find enough winners to more than offset the losers So we wouldn't blame long term Tejon Ranch Co. (NYSE:TRC) shareholders for doubting their decision to hold, with the stock down 37% over a half decade. It's up 1.0% in the last seven days.

View our latest analysis for Tejon Ranch

We don't think that Tejon Ranch's modest trailing twelve month profit has the market's full attention at the moment. We think revenue is probably a better guide. As a general rule, we think this kind of company is more comparable to loss-making stocks, since the actual profit is so low. For shareholders to have confidence a company will grow profits significantly, it must grow revenue.

In the last five years Tejon Ranch saw its revenue shrink by 4.7% per year. That's not what investors generally want to see. The share price decline at a rate of 8.8% per year is disappointing. But it doesn't surprise given the falling revenue. Without profits, its hard to see how shareholders win if the revenue keeps falling.

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

NYSE:TRC Income Statement, January 30th 2020
NYSE:TRC Income Statement, January 30th 2020

It's probably worth noting we've seen significant insider buying in the last quarter, which we consider a positive. That said, we think earnings and revenue growth trends are even more important factors to consider. Before buying or selling a stock, we always recommend a close examination of historic growth trends, available here..

A Different Perspective

While the broader market gained around 23% in the last year, Tejon Ranch shareholders lost 14%. However, keep in mind that even the best stocks will sometimes underperform the market over a twelve month period. Regrettably, last year's performance caps off a bad run, with the shareholders facing a total loss of 8.8% per year over five years. We realise that Buffett has said investors should 'buy when there is blood on the streets', but we caution that investors should first be sure they are buying a high quality business. 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. Take risks, for example - Tejon Ranch has 3 warning signs (and 1 which is significant) we think you should know about.

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.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.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.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Thank you for reading.