It's easy to match the overall market return by buying an index fund. But if you buy individual stocks, you can do both better or worse than that. For example, the Hanmi Financial Corporation (NASDAQ:HAFC) share price is down 30% in the last year. That's disappointing when you consider the market returned 9.1%. Longer term shareholders haven't suffered as badly, since the stock is down a comparatively less painful 3.0% in three years.
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. By comparing earnings per share (EPS) and share price changes over time, we can get a feel for how investor attitudes to a company have morphed over time.
Even though the Hanmi Financial share price is down over the year, its EPS actually improved. It's quite possible that growth expectations may have been unreasonable in the past. It's fair to say that the share price does not seem to be reflecting the EPS growth. But we might find some different metrics explain the share price movements better.
Hanmi Financial's dividend seems healthy to us, so we doubt that the yield is a concern for the market. In fact, it seems more likely that the revenue fall of 3.7% in the last year is the worry. So it seems likely that the weak revenue is making the market more cautious about the stock.
You can see how revenue and earnings have changed over time in the image below, (click on the chart to see cashflow).
We consider it positive that insiders have made significant purchases in the last year. Having said that, most people consider earnings and revenue growth trends to be a more meaningful guide to the business. This free report showing analyst forecasts should help you form a view on Hanmi Financial
What About Dividends?
It is important to consider the total shareholder return, as well as the share price return, for any given stock. 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. Arguably, the TSR gives a more comprehensive picture of the return generated by a stock. We note that for Hanmi Financial the TSR over the last year was -27%, 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
Hanmi Financial shareholders are down 27% for the year (even including dividends), but the market itself is up 9.1%. Even the share prices of good stocks drop sometimes, but we want to see improvements in the fundamental metrics of a business, before getting too interested. Longer term investors wouldn't be so upset, since they would have made 2.3%, each year, over five years. If the fundamental data continues to indicate long term sustainable growth, the current sell-off could be an opportunity worth considering. It is all well and good that insiders have been buying shares, but we suggest you check here to see what price insiders were buying at.
If you like to buy stocks alongside management, then you might just love this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on US exchanges.
We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.
If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at email@example.com. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.