Alstom SA (EPA:ALO) shareholders should be happy to see the share price up 30% in the last quarter. But that doesn’t change the fact that the returns over the last three years have been less than pleasing. After all, the share price is down 42% in the last three years, significantly under-performing the market.
Now let’s have a look at the company’s fundamentals, and see if the long term shareholder return has matched the performance of the underlying business.
View our latest analysis for Alstom
While markets are a powerful pricing mechanism, share prices reflect investor sentiment, not just 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).
Over the three years that the share price declined, Alstom’s earnings per share (EPS) dropped significantly, falling to a loss. Due to the loss, it’s not easy to use EPS as a reliable guide to the business. However, we can say we’d expect to see a falling share price in this scenario.
You can see how EPS has changed over time in the image below (click on the chart to see the exact values).
It’s probably worth noting that the CEO is paid less than the median at similar sized companies. It’s always worth keeping an eye on CEO pay, but a more important question is whether the company will grow earnings throughout the years. Before buying or selling a stock, we always recommend a close examination of historic growth trends, available here..
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. Arguably, the TSR gives a more comprehensive picture of the return generated by a stock. In the case of Alstom, it has a TSR of -37% for the last 3 years. That exceeds its share price return that we previously mentioned. This is largely a result of its dividend payments!
A Different Perspective
While the broader market gained around 3.5% in the last year, Alstom shareholders lost 2.7% (even including dividends). However, keep in mind that even the best stocks will sometimes underperform the market over a twelve month period. On the bright side, long term shareholders have made money, with a gain of 0.4% per year over half a decade. If the fundamental data continues to indicate long term sustainable growth, the current sell-off could be an opportunity worth considering. You could get a better understanding of Alstom’s growth by checking out this more detailed historical graph of earnings, revenue and cash flow.
But note: Alstom may not be the best stock to buy. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies with past earnings growth (and further growth forecast).
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on FR exchanges.
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Find out whether Alstom is potentially over or undervalued by checking out our comprehensive analysis, which includes fair value estimates, risks and warnings, dividends, insider transactions and financial health.
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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.
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