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Vertu Motors (LON:VTU) shareholders have earned a 94% return over the last year

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The simplest way to invest in stocks is to buy exchange traded funds. But if you pick the right individual stocks, you could make more than that. For example, the Vertu Motors plc (LON:VTU) share price is up 94% in the last 1 year, clearly besting the market return of around 30% (not including dividends). So that should have shareholders smiling. Looking back further, the stock price is 69% higher than it was three years ago.

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 Vertu Motors

While the efficient markets hypothesis continues to be taught by some, it has been proven that markets are over-reactive dynamic systems, and investors are not always rational. One way to examine how market sentiment has changed over time is to look at the interaction between a company's share price and its earnings per share (EPS).

During the last year Vertu Motors grew its earnings per share, moving from a loss to a profit.

The result looks like a strong improvement to us, so we're not surprised the market likes the growth. Inflection points like this can be a great time to take a closer look at a company.

The image below shows how EPS has tracked over time (if you click on the image you can see greater detail).

earnings-per-share-growth
earnings-per-share-growth

It is of course excellent to see how Vertu Motors has grown profits over the years, but the future is more important for shareholders. Take a more thorough look at Vertu Motors' financial health with this free report on its balance sheet.

A Different Perspective

We're pleased to report that Vertu Motors shareholders have received a total shareholder return of 94% over one year. Of course, that includes the dividend. Since the one-year TSR is better than the five-year TSR (the latter coming in at 11% per year), it would seem that the stock's performance has improved in recent times. Given the share price momentum remains strong, it might be worth taking a closer look at the stock, lest you miss an opportunity. It's always interesting to track share price performance over the longer term. But to understand Vertu Motors better, we need to consider many other factors. Like risks, for instance. Every company has them, and we've spotted 3 warning signs for Vertu Motors (of which 1 is concerning!) you should know about.

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 GB 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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