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Investing in O2Micro International (NASDAQ:OIIM) five years ago would have delivered you a 260% gain

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While O2Micro International Limited (NASDAQ:OIIM) shareholders are probably generally happy, the stock hasn't had particularly good run recently, with the share price falling 18% in the last quarter. But that scarcely detracts from the really solid long term returns generated by the company over five years. We think most investors would be happy with the 260% return, over that period. So while it's never fun to see a share price fall, it's important to look at a longer time horizon. Ultimately business performance will determine whether the stock price continues the positive long term trend.

Now it's worth having a look at the company's fundamentals too, because that will help us determine if the long term shareholder return has matched the performance of the underlying business.

See our latest analysis for O2Micro International

In his essay The Superinvestors of Graham-and-Doddsville Warren Buffett described how share prices do not always rationally reflect the value of a business. By comparing earnings per share (EPS) and share price changes over time, we can get a feel for how investor attitudes to a company have morphed over time.

During the last half decade, O2Micro International became profitable. Sometimes, the start of profitability is a major inflection point that can signal fast earnings growth to come, which in turn justifies very strong share price gains. Since the company was unprofitable five years ago, but not three years ago, it's worth taking a look at the returns in the last three years, too. Indeed, the O2Micro International share price has gained 169% in three years. In the same period, EPS is up 30% per year. Notably, the EPS growth has been slower than the annualised share price gain of 39% over three years. So one can reasonably conclude the market is more enthusiastic about the stock than it was three years ago.

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 O2Micro International has improved its bottom line lately, but is it going to grow revenue? This free report showing analyst revenue forecasts should help you figure out if the EPS growth can be sustained.

A Different Perspective

It's good to see that O2Micro International has rewarded shareholders with a total shareholder return of 80% in the last twelve months. That's better than the annualised return of 29% over half a decade, implying that the company is doing better recently. Someone with an optimistic perspective could view the recent improvement in TSR as indicating that the business itself is getting better with time. It's always interesting to track share price performance over the longer term. But to understand O2Micro International better, we need to consider many other factors. Take risks, for example - O2Micro International has 2 warning signs we think 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 US 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.

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