New Zealand markets closed
  • NZX 50

    11,730.52
    -29.49 (-0.25%)
     
  • NZD/USD

    0.6457
    +0.0027 (+0.41%)
     
  • NZD/EUR

    0.6286
    +0.0060 (+0.97%)
     
  • ALL ORDS

    7,288.80
    -36.60 (-0.50%)
     
  • ASX 200

    7,032.50
    -38.50 (-0.54%)
     
  • OIL

    91.88
    -2.46 (-2.61%)
     
  • GOLD

    1,818.90
    +11.70 (+0.65%)
     
  • NASDAQ

    13,565.87
    +273.89 (+2.06%)
     
  • FTSE

    7,500.89
    +34.98 (+0.47%)
     
  • Dow Jones

    33,761.05
    +424.38 (+1.27%)
     
  • DAX

    13,795.85
    +101.34 (+0.74%)
     
  • Hang Seng

    20,175.62
    +93.19 (+0.46%)
     
  • NIKKEI 225

    28,546.98
    +727.65 (+2.62%)
     
  • NZD/JPY

    86.1590
    +0.6720 (+0.79%)
     

Investors in Matthews International (NASDAQ:MATW) have unfortunately lost 48% over the last five years

·3-min read

The main aim of stock picking is to find the market-beating stocks. But every investor is virtually certain to have both over-performing and under-performing stocks. So we wouldn't blame long term Matthews International Corporation (NASDAQ:MATW) shareholders for doubting their decision to hold, with the stock down 54% over a half decade. And some of the more recent buyers are probably worried, too, with the stock falling 29% in the last year. Furthermore, it's down 11% in about a quarter. That's not much fun for holders. Of course, this share price action may well have been influenced by the 10% decline in the broader market, throughout the period.

It's worthwhile assessing if the company's economics have been moving in lockstep with these underwhelming shareholder returns, or if there is some disparity between the two. So let's do just that.

View our latest analysis for Matthews International

While the efficient markets hypothesis continues to be taught by some, it has been proven that markets are over-reactive dynamic systems, and investors are not always rational. One flawed but reasonable way to assess how sentiment around a company has changed is to compare the earnings per share (EPS) with the share price.

In the last half decade Matthews International saw its share price fall as its EPS declined below zero. This was, in part, due to extraordinary items impacting earnings. Since the company has fallen to a loss making position, it's hard to compare the change in EPS with the share price change. However, we can say we'd expect to see a falling share price in this scenario.

The image below shows how EPS has tracked over time (if you click on the image you can see greater detail).

earnings-per-share-growth
earnings-per-share-growth

This free interactive report on Matthews International's earnings, revenue and cash flow is a great place to start, if you want to investigate the stock further.

What About Dividends?

When looking at investment returns, it is important to consider the difference between total shareholder return (TSR) and share price return. The TSR is a return calculation that accounts for the value of cash dividends (assuming that any dividend received was reinvested) and the calculated value of any discounted capital raisings and spin-offs. So for companies that pay a generous dividend, the TSR is often a lot higher than the share price return. We note that for Matthews International the TSR over the last 5 years was -48%, which is better than the share price return mentioned above. And there's no prize for guessing that the dividend payments largely explain the divergence!

A Different Perspective

While the broader market lost about 8.5% in the twelve months, Matthews International shareholders did even worse, losing 27% (even including dividends). Having said that, it's inevitable that some stocks will be oversold in a falling market. The key is to keep your eyes on the fundamental developments. Regrettably, last year's performance caps off a bad run, with the shareholders facing a total loss of 8% per year over five years. Generally speaking long term share price weakness can be a bad sign, though contrarian investors might want to research the stock in hope of a turnaround. While it is well worth considering the different impacts that market conditions can have on the share price, there are other factors that are even more important. For instance, we've identified 2 warning signs for Matthews International (1 is concerning) that you should be aware of.

For those who like to find winning investments this free list of growing companies with recent insider purchasing, could be just the ticket.

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.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting