3.2% earnings growth over 5 years has not materialized into gains for SouthState (NASDAQ:SSB) shareholders over that period
Ideally, your overall portfolio should beat the market average. But the main game is to find enough winners to more than offset the losers At this point some shareholders may be questioning their investment in SouthState Corporation (NASDAQ:SSB), since the last five years saw the share price fall 17%. Even worse, it's down 12% in about a month, which isn't fun at all. Importantly, this could be a market reaction to the recently released financial results. You can check out the latest numbers in our company report.
With the stock having lost 6.1% in the past week, it's worth taking a look at business performance and seeing if there's any red flags.
Check out our latest analysis for SouthState
In his essay The Superinvestors of Graham-and-Doddsville Warren Buffett described how share prices do not always rationally reflect the value of a business. 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.
While the share price declined over five years, SouthState actually managed to increase EPS by an average of 17% per year. Given the share price reaction, one might suspect that EPS is not a good guide to the business performance during the period (perhaps due to a one-off loss or gain). Alternatively, growth expectations may have been unreasonable in the past.
Generally speaking we'd expect to see stronger share price increases on the back of sustained EPS growth, but other metrics may hold a clue to why the share price performance is relatively modest.
Revenue is actually up 26% over the time period. So it seems one might have to take closer look at the fundamentals to understand why the share price languishes. After all, there may be an opportunity.
The image below shows how earnings and revenue have tracked over time (if you click on the image you can see greater detail).
It's probably worth noting we've seen significant insider buying in the last quarter, which we consider a positive. On the other hand, we think the revenue and earnings trends are much more meaningful measures of the business. So we recommend checking out this free report showing consensus forecasts
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. In the case of SouthState, it has a TSR of -6.1% for the last 5 years. That exceeds its share price return that we previously mentioned. The dividends paid by the company have thusly boosted the total shareholder return.
A Different Perspective
The total return of 12% received by SouthState shareholders over the last year isn't far from the market return of -12%. So last year was actually even worse than the last five years, which cost shareholders 1.2% per year. Weak performance over the long term usually destroys market confidence in a stock, but bargain hunters may want to take a closer look for signs of a turnaround. I find it very interesting to look at share price over the long term as a proxy for business performance. But to truly gain insight, we need to consider other information, too. Even so, be aware that SouthState is showing 1 warning sign in our investment analysis , you should know about...
SouthState is not the only stock insiders are buying. So take a peek at this free list of growing companies with insider buying.
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on American exchanges.
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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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