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Some TrovaGene (NASDAQ:TROV) Shareholders Have Copped A 99% Share Price Wipe Out

Simply Wall St

TrovaGene, Inc. (NASDAQ:TROV) shareholders are doubtless heartened to see the share price bounce 80% in just one week. But only the myopic could ignore the astounding decline over three years. To wit, the share price sky-dived 99% in that time. Arguably, the recent bounce is to be expected after such a bad drop. Of course the real question is whether the business can sustain a turnaround.

We really hope anyone holding through that price crash has a diversified portfolio. Even when you lose money, you don't have to lose the lesson.

See our latest analysis for TrovaGene

With just US$466,619 worth of revenue in twelve months, we don't think the market considers TrovaGene to have proven its business plan. We can't help wondering why it's publicly listed so early in its journey. Are venture capitalists not interested? So it seems that the investors focused more on what could be, than paying attention to the current revenues (or lack thereof). It seems likely some shareholders believe that TrovaGene has the funding to invent a new product before too long.

We think companies that have neither significant revenues nor profits are pretty high risk. There is usually a significant chance that they will need more money for business development, putting them at the mercy of capital markets. So the share price itself impacts the value of the shares (as it determines the cost of capital). While some companies like this go on to deliver on their plan, making good money for shareholders, many end in painful losses and eventual de-listing. It certainly is a dangerous place to invest, as TrovaGene investors might realise.

When it reported in June 2019 TrovaGene had minimal cash in excess of all liabilities consider its expenditure: just US$5.8m to be specific. So if it hasn't remedied the situation already, it will almost certainly have to raise more capital soon. That probably explains why the share price is down 80% per year, over 3 years. The image below shows how TrovaGene's balance sheet has changed over time; if you want to see the precise values, simply click on the image. You can click on the image below to see (in greater detail) how TrovaGene's cash levels have changed over time.

NasdaqCM:TROV Historical Debt, August 20th 2019

It can be extremely risky to invest in a company that doesn't even have revenue. There's no way to know its value easily. What if insiders are ditching the stock hand over fist? I'd like that just about as much as I like to drink milk and fruit juice mixed together. You can click here to see if there are insiders selling.

A Different Perspective

TrovaGene shareholders are down 37% for the year, but the market itself is up 2.6%. Even the share prices of good stocks drop sometimes, but we want to see improvements in the fundamental metrics of a business, before getting too interested. However, the loss over the last year isn't as bad as the 61% per annum loss investors have suffered over the last half decade. We would want clear information suggesting the company will grow, before taking the view that the share price will stabilize. Shareholders might want to examine this detailed historical graph of past earnings, revenue and cash flow.

Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a peek at this free list of companies we expect will grow earnings.

Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on US exchanges.

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.

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. Thank you for reading.