For many, the main point of investing in the stock market is to achieve spectacular returns. While not every stock performs well, when investors win, they can win big. For example, the EVI Industries, Inc. (NYSEMKT:EVI) share price is up a whopping 638% in the last half decade, a handsome return for long term holders. And this is just one example of the epic gains achieved by some long term investors. Also pleasing for shareholders was the 29% gain in the last three months.
We love happy stories like this one. The company should be really proud of that performance!
Given that EVI Industries only made minimal earnings in the last twelve months, we'll focus on revenue to gauge its business development. As a general rule, we think this kind of company is more comparable to loss-making stocks, since the actual profit is so low. For shareholders to have confidence a company will grow profits significantly, it must grow revenue.
For the last half decade, EVI Industries can boast revenue growth at a rate of 41% per year. Even measured against other revenue-focussed companies, that's a good result. Fortunately, the market has not missed this, and has pushed the share price up by 49% per year in that time. Despite the strong run, top performers like EVI Industries have been known to go on winning for decades. So we'd recommend you take a closer look at this one, but keep in mind the market seems optimistic.
The image below shows how earnings and revenue have tracked over time (if you click on the image you can see greater detail).
It's probably worth noting that the CEO is paid less than the median at similar sized companies. It's always worth keeping an eye on CEO pay, but a more important question is whether the company will grow earnings throughout the years. This free interactive report on EVI Industries' earnings, revenue and cash flow is a great place to start, if you want to investigate the stock further.
What about the Total Shareholder Return (TSR)?
We've already covered EVI Industries' share price action, but we should also mention its total shareholder return (TSR). The TSR is a return calculation that accounts for the value of cash dividends (assuming that any dividend received was reinvested) and the calculated value of any discounted capital raisings and spin-offs. EVI Industries' TSR of 690% for the 5 years exceeded its share price return, because it has paid dividends.
A Different Perspective
EVI Industries shareholders are down 16% for the year, but the market itself is up 21%. Even the share prices of good stocks drop sometimes, but we want to see improvements in the fundamental metrics of a business, before getting too interested. Longer term investors wouldn't be so upset, since they would have made 51%, 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. 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. Case in point: We've spotted 2 warning signs for EVI Industries you should be aware of.
Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a peek at this free list of companies we expect will grow earnings.
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on US exchanges.
This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. 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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