The excitement of investing in a company that can reverse its fortunes is a big draw for some speculators, so even companies that have no revenue, no profit, and a record of falling short, can manage to find investors. Unfortunately, these high risk investments often have little probability of ever paying off, and many investors pay a price to learn their lesson. Loss-making companies are always racing against time to reach financial sustainability, so investors in these companies may be taking on more risk than they should.
So if this idea of high risk and high reward doesn't suit, you might be more interested in profitable, growing companies, like Mastercard (NYSE:MA). Even if this company is fairly valued by the market, investors would agree that generating consistent profits will continue to provide Mastercard with the means to add long-term value to shareholders.
Mastercard's Earnings Per Share Are Growing
Generally, companies experiencing growth in earnings per share (EPS) should see similar trends in share price. So it makes sense that experienced investors pay close attention to company EPS when undertaking investment research. We can see that in the last three years Mastercard grew its EPS by 15% per year. That's a good rate of growth, if it can be sustained.
One way to double-check a company's growth is to look at how its revenue, and earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) margins are changing. The music to the ears of Mastercard shareholders is that EBIT margins have grown from 54% to 57% in the last 12 months and revenues are on an upwards trend as well. Both of which are great metrics to check off for potential growth.
The chart below shows how the company's bottom and top lines have progressed over time. To see the actual numbers, click on the chart.
The trick, as an investor, is to find companies that are going to perform well in the future, not just in the past. While crystal balls don't exist, you can check our visualization of consensus analyst forecasts for Mastercard's future EPS 100% free.
Are Mastercard Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?
Owing to the size of Mastercard, we wouldn't expect insiders to hold a significant proportion of the company. But we do take comfort from the fact that they are investors in the company. Notably, they have an enviable stake in the company, worth US$343m. This comes in at 0.1% of shares in the company, which is a fair amount of a business of this size. So despite their percentage holding being low, company management still have plenty of reasons to deliver the best outcomes for investors.
Is Mastercard Worth Keeping An Eye On?
As previously touched on, Mastercard is a growing business, which is encouraging. For those who are looking for a little more than this, the high level of insider ownership enhances our enthusiasm for this growth. That combination is very appealing. So yes, we do think the stock is worth keeping an eye on. You should always think about risks though. Case in point, we've spotted 1 warning sign for Mastercard you should be aware of.
There's always the possibility of doing well buying stocks that are not growing earnings and do not have insiders buying shares. But for those who consider these important metrics, we encourage you to check out companies that do have those features. You can access a free list of them here.
Please note the insider transactions discussed in this article refer to reportable transactions in the relevant jurisdiction.
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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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