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Ciena's (NYSE:CIEN) five-year earnings growth trails the 16% YoY shareholder returns

·2-min read

When you buy shares in a company, it's worth keeping in mind the possibility that it could fail, and you could lose your money. But on a lighter note, a good company can see its share price rise well over 100%. For instance, the price of Ciena Corporation (NYSE:CIEN) stock is up an impressive 109% over the last five years. It's also up 14% in about a month. But this could be related to good market conditions -- stocks in its market are up 8.7% in the last month.

Since the stock has added US$382m to its market cap in the past week alone, let's see if underlying performance has been driving long-term returns.

View our latest analysis for Ciena

While markets are a powerful pricing mechanism, share prices reflect investor sentiment, not just underlying business performance. One flawed but reasonable way to assess how sentiment around a company has changed is to compare the earnings per share (EPS) with the share price.

Over half a decade, Ciena managed to grow its earnings per share at 29% a year. The EPS growth is more impressive than the yearly share price gain of 16% over the same period. So one could conclude that the broader market has become more cautious towards the stock.

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 know that Ciena has improved its bottom line lately, but is it going to grow revenue? You could check out this free report showing analyst revenue forecasts.

A Different Perspective

While it's certainly disappointing to see that Ciena shares lost 8.3% throughout the year, that wasn't as bad as the market loss of 11%. Of course, the long term returns are far more important and the good news is that over five years, the stock has returned 16% for each year. It could be that the business is just facing some short term problems, but shareholders should keep a close eye on the fundamentals. It's always interesting to track share price performance over the longer term. But to understand Ciena better, we need to consider many other factors. For instance, we've identified 1 warning sign for Ciena that you should be aware of.

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 US 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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