Thanks in no small measure to Vanguard founder Jack Bogle, it's easy buy a low cost index fund, which should provide the average market return. But you can make better returns by buying undervalued shares. To wit, Pangaea Logistics Solutions, Ltd. (NASDAQ:PANL) shares are up 40% in three years, besting the market return. The bad news is that the share price seems to lack positive momentum recently, since it has dropped 5.8% in the last year.
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.
Pangaea Logistics Solutions became profitable within the last three years. So we would expect a higher share price over the period.
You can see below how EPS has changed over time (discover the exact values by clicking on the image).
It is of course excellent to see how Pangaea Logistics Solutions has grown profits over the years, but the future is more important for shareholders. You can see how its balance sheet has strengthened (or weakened) over time in this free interactive graphic.
What About Dividends?
It is important to consider the total shareholder return, as well as the share price return, for any given stock. Whereas the share price return only reflects the change in the share price, the TSR includes the value of dividends (assuming they were reinvested) and the benefit of any discounted capital raising or spin-off. Arguably, the TSR gives a more comprehensive picture of the return generated by a stock. As it happens, Pangaea Logistics Solutions's TSR for the last 3 years was 43%, which exceeds the share price return mentioned earlier. And there's no prize for guessing that the dividend payments largely explain the divergence!
A Different Perspective
Pangaea Logistics Solutions shareholders are down 3.8% for the year (even including dividends), but the broader market is up 3.5%. However, keep in mind that even the best stocks will sometimes underperform the market over a twelve month period. Investors are up over three years, booking 13% per year, much better than the more recent returns. The recent sell-off could be an opportunity if the business remains sound, so it may be worth checking the fundamental data for signs of a long-term growth trend. Most investors take the time to check the data on insider transactions. You can click here to see if insiders have been buying or selling.
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.
We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.
If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at email@example.com. 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. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.