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8.6% earnings growth over 1 year has not materialized into gains for Stewart Information Services (NYSE:STC) shareholders over that period

Passive investing in an index fund is a good way to ensure your own returns roughly match the overall market. While individual stocks can be big winners, plenty more fail to generate satisfactory returns. For example, the Stewart Information Services Corporation (NYSE:STC) share price is down 32% in the last year. That's well below the market decline of 19%. The silver lining (for longer term investors) is that the stock is still 16% higher than it was three years ago. Even worse, it's down 16% in about a month, which isn't fun at all. But this could be related to poor market conditions -- stocks are down 8.0% in the same time.

After losing 9.9% this past week, it's worth investigating the company's fundamentals to see what we can infer from past performance.

Check out our latest analysis for Stewart Information Services

To paraphrase Benjamin Graham: Over the short term the market is a voting machine, but over the long term it's a weighing machine. 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).

Even though the Stewart Information Services share price is down over the year, its EPS actually improved. It's quite possible that growth expectations may have been unreasonable in the past.

The divergence between the EPS and the share price is quite notable, during the year. So it's well worth checking out some other metrics, too.

Stewart Information Services' dividend seems healthy to us, so we doubt that the yield is a concern for the market. The revenue trend doesn't seem to explain why the share price is down. Of course, it could simply be that it simply fell short of the market consensus expectations.

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

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

We like that insiders have been buying shares in the last twelve months. Even so, future earnings will be far more important to whether current shareholders make money. This free report showing analyst forecasts should help you form a view on Stewart Information Services

A Different Perspective

While the broader market lost about 19% in the twelve months, Stewart Information Services shareholders did even worse, losing 30% (even including dividends). However, it could simply be that the share price has been impacted by broader market jitters. It might be worth keeping an eye on the fundamentals, in case there's a good opportunity. On the bright side, long term shareholders have made money, with a gain of 6% per year over half a decade. It could be that the recent sell-off is an opportunity, so it may be worth checking the fundamental data for signs of a long term growth trend. It's always interesting to track share price performance over the longer term. But to understand Stewart Information Services better, we need to consider many other factors. For instance, we've identified 1 warning sign for Stewart Information Services that you should be aware of.

There are plenty of other companies that have insiders buying up shares. You probably do 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.

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