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ING Groep (AMS:INGA) investors are sitting on a loss of 19% if they invested five years ago

ING Groep N.V. (AMS:INGA) shareholders should be happy to see the share price up 11% in the last month. But that doesn't change the fact that the returns over the last five years have been less than pleasing. You would have done a lot better buying an index fund, since the stock has dropped 37% in that half decade.

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 ING Groep

To paraphrase Benjamin Graham: Over the short term the market is a voting machine, but over the long term it's a weighing machine. 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.

During the five years over which the share price declined, ING Groep's earnings per share (EPS) dropped by 2.4% each year. Readers should note that the share price has fallen faster than the EPS, at a rate of 9% per year, over the period. This implies that the market was previously too optimistic about the stock. The less favorable sentiment is reflected in its current P/E ratio of 9.42.

You can see below how EPS has changed over time (discover the exact values by clicking on the image).

earnings-per-share-growth
earnings-per-share-growth

It might be well worthwhile taking a look at our free report on ING Groep's earnings, revenue and cash flow.

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 incorporates the value of any spin-offs or discounted capital raisings, along with any dividends, based on the assumption that the dividends are reinvested. So for companies that pay a generous dividend, the TSR is often a lot higher than the share price return. We note that for ING Groep the TSR over the last 5 years was -19%, which is better than the share price return mentioned above. This is largely a result of its dividend payments!

A Different Perspective

While it's never nice to take a loss, ING Groep shareholders can take comfort that , including dividends,their trailing twelve month loss of 19% wasn't as bad as the market loss of around 27%. Unfortunately, last year's performance may indicate unresolved challenges, given that it's worse than the annualised loss of 4% over the last half decade. While some investors do well specializing in buying companies that are struggling (but nonetheless undervalued), don't forget that Buffett said that 'turnarounds seldom turn'. 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. For instance, we've identified 1 warning sign for ING Groep that you should be aware of.

If you would prefer to check out another company -- one with potentially superior financials -- then do not miss this free list of companies that have proven they can grow earnings.

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