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. Sometimes these stories can cloud the minds of investors, leading them to invest with their emotions rather than on the merit of good company fundamentals. 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.
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 Weis Markets (NYSE:WMK). While profit isn't the sole metric that should be considered when investing, it's worth recognising businesses that can consistently produce it.
Weis Markets' Earnings Per Share Are Growing
Generally, companies experiencing growth in earnings per share (EPS) should see similar trends in share price. That means EPS growth is considered a real positive by most successful long-term investors. Impressively, Weis Markets has grown EPS by 24% per year, compound, in the last three years. As a general rule, we'd say that if a company can keep up that sort of growth, shareholders will be beaming.
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. While we note Weis Markets achieved similar EBIT margins to last year, revenue grew by a solid 8.0% to US$4.4b. That's a real positive.
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.
While profitability drives the upside, prudent investors always check the balance sheet, too.
Are Weis Markets Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?
It's said that there's no smoke without fire. For investors, insider buying is often the smoke that indicates which stocks could set the market alight. That's because insider buying often indicates that those closest to the company have confidence that the share price will perform well. However, small purchases are not always indicative of conviction, and insiders don't always get it right.
We note that Weis Markets insiders spent US$189k on stock, over the last year; in contrast, we didn't see any selling. That paints the company in a nice light, as it signals that its leaders are feeling confident in where the company is heading. Zooming in, we can see that the biggest insider purchase was by Senior VP Michael Lockard for US$183k worth of shares, at about US$61.00 per share.
These recent buys aren't the only encouraging sign for shareholders, as a look at the shareholder registry for Weis Markets will reveal that insiders own a significant piece of the pie. In fact, they own 39% of the shares, making insiders a very influential shareholder group. This should be a welcoming sign for investors because it suggests that the people making the decisions are also impacted by their choices. This insider holding amounts to This is an incredible endorsement from them.
Is Weis Markets Worth Keeping An Eye On?
If you believe that share price follows earnings per share you should definitely be delving further into Weis Markets' strong EPS growth. Furthermore, company insiders have been adding to their significant stake in the company. Astute investors will want to keep this stock on watch. While we've looked at the quality of the earnings, we haven't yet done any work to value the stock. So if you like to buy cheap, you may want to check if Weis Markets is trading on a high P/E or a low P/E, relative to its industry.
The good news is that Weis Markets is not the only growth stock with insider buying. Here's a list of them... with insider buying in the last three months!
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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