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Investing in MTY Food Group (TSE:MTY) five years ago would have delivered you a 35% gain

The main point of investing for the long term is to make money. Better yet, you’d like to see the share price move up more than the market average. Unfortunately for shareholders, while the MTY Food Group Inc. (TSE:MTY) share price is up 30% in the last five years, that’s less than the market return. The last year has been disappointing, with the stock price down 13% in that time.

With that in mind, it’s worth seeing if the company’s underlying fundamentals have been the driver of long term performance, or if there are some discrepancies.

See our latest analysis for MTY Food Group

There is no denying that markets are sometimes efficient, but prices do not always reflect underlying business performance. 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.

During five years of share price growth, MTY Food Group achieved compound earnings per share (EPS) growth of 7.7% per year. This EPS growth is higher than the 5% average annual increase in the share price. So it seems the market isn’t so enthusiastic about the stock these days.

The graphic below depicts how EPS has changed over time (unveil the exact values by clicking on the image).

earnings-per-share-growth

It’s probably worth noting that the CEO is paid less than the median at similar sized companies. It’s always worth keeping an eye on CEO pay, but a more important question is whether the company will grow earnings throughout the years. Dive deeper into the earnings by checking this interactive graph of MTY Food Group’s earnings, revenue and cash flow.

What About Dividends?

As well as measuring the share price return, investors should also consider the total shareholder return (TSR). The TSR incorporates the value of any spin-offs or discounted capital raisings, along with any dividends, based on the assumption that the dividends are reinvested. Arguably, the TSR gives a more comprehensive picture of the return generated by a stock. In the case of MTY Food Group, it has a TSR of 35% for the last 5 years. That exceeds its share price return that we previously mentioned. And there’s no prize for guessing that the dividend payments largely explain the divergence!

A Different Perspective

While the broader market gained around 4.2% in the last year, MTY Food Group shareholders lost 11% (even including dividends). However, keep in mind that even the best stocks will sometimes underperform the market over a twelve month period. Longer term investors wouldn’t be so upset, since they would have made 6%, each year, over five years. It could be that the recent sell-off is an opportunity, so it may be worth checking the fundamental data for signs of a long term growth trend. While it is well worth considering the different impacts that market conditions can have on the share price, there are other factors that are even more important. Consider for instance, the ever-present spectre of investment risk. We’ve identified 2 warning signs with MTY Food Group (at least 1 which can’t be ignored) , and understanding them should be part of your investment process.

But note: MTY Food Group may not be the best stock to buy. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies with past earnings growth (and further growth forecast).

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