It's nice to see the U.S. Xpress Enterprises, Inc. (NYSE:USX) share price up 18% in a week. But that doesn't change the fact that the returns over the last year have been stomach churning. Specifically, the stock price nose-dived 72% in that time. It's not uncommon to see a bounce after a drop like that. The important thing is whether the company can turn it around, longer term.
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...' 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.
Unfortunately U.S. Xpress Enterprises reported an EPS drop of 51% for the last year. The share price decline of 72% is actually more than the EPS drop. This suggests the EPS fall has made some shareholders are more nervous about the business. The P/E ratio of 6.69 also points to the negative market sentiment.
You can see below how EPS has changed over time (discover the exact values by clicking on the image).
We consider it positive that insiders have made significant purchases in the last year. Having said that, most people consider earnings and revenue growth trends to be a more meaningful guide to the business. It might be well worthwhile taking a look at our free report on U.S. Xpress Enterprises's earnings, revenue and cash flow.
A Different Perspective
Given that the market gained 0.9% in the last year, U.S. Xpress Enterprises shareholders might be miffed that they lost 72%. However, keep in mind that even the best stocks will sometimes underperform the market over a twelve month period. With the stock down 26% over the last three months, the market doesn't seem to believe that the company has solved all its problems. Given the relatively short history of this stock, we'd remain pretty wary until we see some strong business performance. If you want to research this stock further, the data on insider buying is an obvious place to start. You can click here to see who has been buying shares - and the price they paid.
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.
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