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The three-year earnings decline has likely contributed toFirst Majestic Silver's (TSE:FR) shareholders losses of 43% over that period

In order to justify the effort of selecting individual stocks, it's worth striving to beat the returns from a market index fund. But its virtually certain that sometimes you will buy stocks that fall short of the market average returns. Unfortunately, that's been the case for longer term First Majestic Silver Corp. (TSE:FR) shareholders, since the share price is down 43% in the last three years, falling well short of the market return of around 47%. And the ride hasn't got any smoother in recent times over the last year, with the price 23% lower in that time. Unfortunately the share price momentum is still quite negative, with prices down 19% in thirty days. Importantly, this could be a market reaction to the recently released financial results. You can check out the latest numbers in our company report.

If the past week is anything to go by, investor sentiment for First Majestic Silver isn't positive, so let's see if there's a mismatch between fundamentals and the share price.

See our latest analysis for First Majestic Silver

First Majestic Silver wasn't profitable in the last twelve months, it is unlikely we'll see a strong correlation between its share price and its earnings per share (EPS). Arguably revenue is our next best option. When a company doesn't make profits, we'd generally expect to see good revenue growth. That's because it's hard to be confident a company will be sustainable if revenue growth is negligible, and it never makes a profit.

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Over three years, First Majestic Silver grew revenue at 26% per year. That is faster than most pre-profit companies. The share price drop of 13% per year over three years would be considered disappointing by many, so you might argue the company is getting little credit for its impressive revenue growth. It's possible that the prior share price assumed unrealistically high future growth. Before considering a purchase, investors should consider how quickly expenses are growing, relative to revenue.

The image below shows how earnings and revenue have tracked over time (if you click on the image you can see greater detail).

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

It's good to see that there was some significant insider buying in the last three months. That's a positive. On the other hand, we think the revenue and earnings trends are much more meaningful measures of the business. If you are thinking of buying or selling First Majestic Silver stock, you should check out this free report showing analyst profit forecasts.

A Different Perspective

While the broader market lost about 3.9% in the twelve months, First Majestic Silver shareholders did even worse, losing 23% (even including dividends). However, it could simply be that the share price has been impacted by broader market jitters. It might be worth keeping an eye on the fundamentals, in case there's a good opportunity. Unfortunately, last year's performance may indicate unresolved challenges, given that it was worse than the annualised loss of 3% over the last half decade. Generally speaking long term share price weakness can be a bad sign, though contrarian investors might want to research the stock in hope of a turnaround. 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. Case in point: We've spotted 2 warning signs for First Majestic Silver you should be aware of.

If you like to buy stocks alongside management, then you might just love this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).

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