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Shareholders in Cooper Energy (ASX:COE) are in the red if they invested three years ago

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As an investor its worth striving to ensure your overall portfolio beats the market average. But if you try your hand at stock picking, your risk returning less than the market. Unfortunately, that's been the case for longer term Cooper Energy Limited (ASX:COE) shareholders, since the share price is down 43% in the last three years, falling well short of the market return of around 39%.

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 Cooper Energy

Cooper Energy wasn't profitable in the last twelve months, it is unlikely we'll see a strong correlation between its share price and its earnings per share (EPS). Arguably revenue is our next best option. Shareholders of unprofitable companies usually expect strong revenue growth. As you can imagine, fast revenue growth, when maintained, often leads to fast profit growth.

Over three years, Cooper Energy grew revenue at 31% per year. That's well above most other pre-profit companies. The share price drop of 13% per year over three years would be considered disappointing by many, so you might argue the company is getting little credit for its impressive revenue growth. It seems likely that actual growth fell short of shareholders' expectations. Still, with high hopes now tempered, now might prove to be an opportunity to buy.

The company's revenue and earnings (over time) are depicted in the image below (click to see the exact numbers).

earnings-and-revenue-growth
earnings-and-revenue-growth

Balance sheet strength is crucial. It might be well worthwhile taking a look at our free report on how its financial position has changed over time.

A Different Perspective

Cooper Energy provided a TSR of 3.6% over the last twelve months. Unfortunately this falls short of the market return. On the bright side, that's still a gain, and it is certainly better than the yearly loss of about 4% endured over half a decade. So this might be a sign the business has turned its fortunes around. If you would like to research Cooper Energy in more detail then you might want to take a look at whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in the company.

Of course Cooper Energy may not be the best stock to buy. So you may wish to see this free collection of growth stocks.

Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on AU 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.

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