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Here's Why We Think Baytex Energy (TSE:BTE) Is Well Worth Watching

·4-min read

It's common for many investors, especially those who are inexperienced, to buy shares in companies with a good story even if these companies are loss-making. But the reality is that when a company loses money each year, for long enough, its investors will usually take their share of those losses. While a well funded company may sustain losses for years, it will need to generate a profit eventually, or else investors will move on and the company will wither away.

So if this idea of high risk and high reward doesn't suit, you might be more interested in profitable, growing companies, like Baytex Energy (TSE:BTE). While this doesn't necessarily speak to whether it's undervalued, the profitability of the business is enough to warrant some appreciation - especially if its growing.

Check out our latest analysis for Baytex Energy

How Quickly Is Baytex Energy Increasing Earnings Per Share?

The market is a voting machine in the short term, but a weighing machine in the long term, so you'd expect share price to follow earnings per share (EPS) outcomes eventually. That means EPS growth is considered a real positive by most successful long-term investors. Recognition must be given to the that Baytex Energy has grown EPS by 60% per year, over the last three years. Growth that fast may well be fleeting, but it should be more than enough to pique the interest of the wary stock pickers.

It's often helpful to take a look at earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) margins, as well as revenue growth, to get another take on the quality of the company's growth. The good news is that Baytex Energy is growing revenues, and EBIT margins improved by 315.5 percentage points to 14%, over the last year. That's great to see, on both counts.

You can take a look at the company's revenue and earnings growth trend, in the chart below. To see the actual numbers, click on the chart.

earnings-and-revenue-history
earnings-and-revenue-history

You don't drive with your eyes on the rear-view mirror, so you might be more interested in this free report showing analyst forecasts for Baytex Energy's future profits.

Are Baytex Energy Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?

It's a necessity that company leaders act in the best interest of shareholders and so insider investment always comes as a reassurance to the market. Baytex Energy followers will find comfort in knowing that insiders have a significant amount of capital that aligns their best interests with the wider shareholder group. To be specific, they have CA$39m worth of shares. That shows significant buy-in, and may indicate conviction in the business strategy. Even though that's only about 1.1% of the company, it's enough money to indicate alignment between the leaders of the business and ordinary shareholders.

While it's always good to see some strong conviction in the company from insiders through heavy investment, it's also important for shareholders to ask if management compensation policies are reasonable. Well, based on the CEO pay, you'd argue that they are indeed. For companies with market capitalisations between CA$2.6b and CA$8.3b, like Baytex Energy, the median CEO pay is around CA$4.8m.

The Baytex Energy CEO received CA$3.8m in compensation for the year ending December 2021. That seems pretty reasonable, especially given it's below the median for similar sized companies. While the level of CEO compensation shouldn't be the biggest factor in how the company is viewed, modest remuneration is a positive, because it suggests that the board keeps shareholder interests in mind. Generally, arguments can be made that reasonable pay levels attest to good decision-making.

Is Baytex Energy Worth Keeping An Eye On?

Baytex Energy's earnings per share growth have been climbing higher at an appreciable rate. The cherry on top is that insiders own a bucket-load of shares, and the CEO pay seems really quite reasonable. The strong EPS improvement suggests the businesses is humming along. Baytex Energy certainly ticks a few boxes, so we think it's probably well worth further consideration. We don't want to rain on the parade too much, but we did also find 4 warning signs for Baytex Energy (3 are significant!) that you need to be mindful of.

The beauty of investing is that you can invest in almost any company you want. But if you prefer to focus on stocks that have demonstrated insider buying, here is a list of companies with insider buying in the last three months.

Please note the insider transactions discussed in this article refer to reportable transactions in the relevant jurisdiction.

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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