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Parex Resources' (TSE:PXT) investors will be pleased with their decent 96% return over the last three years

By buying an index fund, investors can approximate the average market return. But if you choose individual stocks with prowess, you can make superior returns. Just take a look at Parex Resources Inc. (TSE:PXT), which is up 84%, over three years, soundly beating the market return of 68% (not including dividends).

So let's investigate and see if the longer term performance of the company has been in line with the underlying business' progress.

View our latest analysis for Parex Resources

While markets are a powerful pricing mechanism, share prices reflect investor sentiment, not just underlying business performance. One imperfect but simple way to consider how the market perception of a company has shifted is to compare the change in the earnings per share (EPS) with the share price movement.

During three years of share price growth, Parex Resources achieved compound earnings per share growth of 29% per year. The average annual share price increase of 23% is actually lower than the EPS growth. So one could reasonably conclude that the market has cooled on the stock. This cautious sentiment is reflected in its (fairly low) P/E ratio of 3.99.

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

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

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 interactive report on Parex Resources' earnings, revenue and cash flow is a great place to start, if you want to investigate the stock further.

What About Dividends?

When looking at investment returns, it is important to consider the difference between total shareholder return (TSR) and share price return. Whereas the share price return only reflects the change in the share price, the TSR includes the value of dividends (assuming they were reinvested) and the benefit of any discounted capital raising or spin-off. It's fair to say that the TSR gives a more complete picture for stocks that pay a dividend. In the case of Parex Resources, it has a TSR of 96% for the last 3 years. That exceeds its share price return that we previously mentioned. This is largely a result of its dividend payments!

A Different Perspective

While the broader market lost about 3.8% in the twelve months, Parex Resources shareholders did even worse, losing 13% (even including dividends). Having said that, it's inevitable that some stocks will be oversold in a falling market. The key is to keep your eyes on the fundamental developments. Longer term investors wouldn't be so upset, since they would have made 7%, 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. It's always interesting to track share price performance over the longer term. But to understand Parex Resources better, we need to consider many other factors. Even so, be aware that Parex Resources is showing 1 warning sign in our investment analysis , you should know about...

There are plenty of other companies that have insiders buying up shares. You probably do not want to miss this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying.

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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