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. Unfortunately, these high risk investments often have little probability of ever paying off, and many investors pay a price to learn their lesson. 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.
If this kind of company isn't your style, you like companies that generate revenue, and even earn profits, then you may well be interested in Ashtead Group (LON:AHT). Now this is not to say that the company presents the best investment opportunity around, but profitability is a key component to success in business.
Ashtead Group's Earnings Per Share Are Growing
If a company can keep growing earnings per share (EPS) long enough, its share price should eventually follow. That means EPS growth is considered a real positive by most successful long-term investors. We can see that in the last three years Ashtead Group grew its EPS by 14% per year. That growth rate is fairly good, assuming the company can keep it up.
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. Ashtead Group maintained stable EBIT margins over the last year, all while growing revenue 22% to US$8.9b. That's a real positive.
In the chart below, you can see how the company has grown earnings and revenue, over time. Click on the chart to see the exact numbers.
In investing, as in life, the future matters more than the past. So why not check out this free interactive visualization of Ashtead Group's forecast profits?
Are Ashtead Group Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?
Owing to the size of Ashtead Group, we wouldn't expect insiders to hold a significant proportion of the company. But thanks to their investment in the company, it's pleasing to see that there are still incentives to align their actions with the shareholders. Given insiders own a significant chunk of shares, currently valued at US$41m, they have plenty of motivation to push the business to succeed. This should keep them focused on creating long term value for shareholders.
Does Ashtead Group Deserve A Spot On Your Watchlist?
One important encouraging feature of Ashtead Group is that it is growing profits. To add an extra spark to the fire, significant insider ownership in the company is another highlight. These two factors are a huge highlight for the company which should be a strong contender your watchlists. Even so, be aware that Ashtead Group is showing 1 warning sign in our investment analysis , you should know about...
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.
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.
Join A Paid User Research Session
You’ll receive a US$30 Amazon Gift card for 1 hour of your time while helping us build better investing tools for the individual investors like yourself. Sign up here