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Wotso Property (ASX:WOT) investors are sitting on a loss of 9.4% if they invested a year ago

·3-min read

You can invest in an index fund if you want to make sure your returns approximately match the overall market. In contrast individual stocks will provide a wide range of possible returns, and may fall short. One such example is Wotso Property (ASX:WOT), which saw its share price fall 13% over a year, against a market decline of 8.7%. Because Wotso Property hasn't been listed for many years, the market is still learning about how the business performs.

Now let's have a look at the company's fundamentals, and see if the long term shareholder return has matched the performance of the underlying business.

See our latest analysis for Wotso Property

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. 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.

Wotso Property managed to increase earnings per share from a loss to a profit, over the last 12 months.

When a company has just transitioned to profitability, earnings per share growth is not always the best way to look at the share price action. So it makes sense to check out some other factors.

Wotso Property's dividend seems healthy to us, so we doubt that the yield is a concern for the market. From what we can see, revenue is pretty flat, so that doesn't really explain the share price drop. Unless, of course, the market was expecting a revenue uptick.

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 probably worth noting we've seen significant insider buying in the last quarter, which we consider a positive. On the other hand, we think the revenue and earnings trends are much more meaningful measures of the business. Dive deeper into the earnings by checking this interactive graph of Wotso Property's earnings, revenue and cash flow.

What About Dividends?

When looking at investment returns, it is important to consider the difference between total shareholder return (TSR) and share price return. The TSR incorporates the value of any spin-offs or discounted capital raisings, along with any dividends, based on the assumption that the dividends are reinvested. Arguably, the TSR gives a more comprehensive picture of the return generated by a stock. In the case of Wotso Property, it has a TSR of -9.4% for the last 1 year. That exceeds its share price return that we previously mentioned. And there's no prize for guessing that the dividend payments largely explain the divergence!

A Different Perspective

Wotso Property shareholders are down 9.4% over twelve months (even including dividends). That's reasonably close to the the market return of -8.7%. Given that the share price has continued to slide (by 2.3%) in the last three months, it's hard to know when we might see the bottom. It's not uncommon to see companies without long term track records disappoint shareholders. 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. Even so, be aware that Wotso Property is showing 4 warning signs in our investment analysis , and 2 of those are significant...

Wotso Property is not the only stock that insiders are buying. For those who like to find winning investments this free list of growing companies with recent insider purchasing, could be just the ticket.

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