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Shareholders in New Zealand Refining (NZSE:NZR) are in the red if they invested three years ago

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If you love investing in stocks you're bound to buy some losers. Long term The New Zealand Refining Company Limited (NZSE:NZR) shareholders know that all too well, since the share price is down considerably over three years. Unfortunately, they have held through a 63% decline in the share price in that time.

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

Check out our latest analysis for New Zealand Refining

Because New Zealand Refining made a loss in the last twelve months, we think the market is probably more focussed on revenue and revenue growth, at least for now. Shareholders of unprofitable companies usually expect strong revenue growth. Some companies are willing to postpone profitability to grow revenue faster, but in that case one does expect good top-line growth.

Over the last three years, New Zealand Refining's revenue dropped 17% per year. That's definitely a weaker result than most pre-profit companies report. With no profits and falling revenue it is no surprise that investors have been dumping the stock, pushing the price down by 18% per year over that time. When revenue is dropping, and losses are still costing, and the share price sinking fast, it's fair to ask if something is remiss. After losing money on a declining business with falling stock price, we always consider whether eager bagholders are still offering us a reasonable exit price.

You can see below how earnings and revenue have changed over time (discover the exact values by clicking on the image).

earnings-and-revenue-growth
earnings-and-revenue-growth

This free interactive report on New Zealand Refining's balance sheet strength is a great place to start, if you want to investigate the stock further.

A Different Perspective

We're pleased to report that New Zealand Refining shareholders have received a total shareholder return of 61% over one year. There's no doubt those recent returns are much better than the TSR loss of 9% per year over five years. We generally put more weight on the long term performance over the short term, but the recent improvement could hint at a (positive) inflection point within the business. I find it very interesting to look at share price over the long term as a proxy for business performance. But to truly gain insight, we need to consider other information, too. To that end, you should be aware of the 1 warning sign we've spotted with New Zealand Refining .

If you are like me, then you will 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 NZ exchanges.

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.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.

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