DBS Group Holdings' (SGX:D05) investors will be pleased with their favorable 56% return over the last three years

One simple way to benefit from the stock market is to buy an index fund. But many of us dare to dream of bigger returns, and build a portfolio ourselves. For example, DBS Group Holdings Ltd (SGX:D05) shareholders have seen the share price rise 38% over three years, well in excess of the market decline (12%, not including dividends). However, more recent returns haven't been as impressive as that, with the stock returning just 13% in the last year , including dividends .

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 DBS Group Holdings

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 imperfect but simple way to consider how the market perception of a company has shifted is to compare the change in the earnings per share (EPS) with the share price movement.

During three years of share price growth, DBS Group Holdings achieved compound earnings per share growth of 3.6% per year. This EPS growth is lower than the 11% average annual increase in the share price. This indicates that the market is feeling more optimistic on the stock, after the last few years of progress. It is quite common to see investors become enamoured with a business, after a few years of solid progress.

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

We know that DBS Group Holdings has improved its bottom line lately, but is it going to grow revenue? Check if analysts think DBS Group Holdings will grow revenue in the future.

What About Dividends?

As well as measuring the share price return, investors should also consider the total shareholder return (TSR). 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, DBS Group Holdings' TSR for the last 3 years was 56%, which exceeds the share price return mentioned earlier. This is largely a result of its dividend payments!

A Different Perspective

We're pleased to report that DBS Group Holdings shareholders have received a total shareholder return of 13% 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 12% per year), it would seem that the stock's performance has improved in recent times. 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 DBS Group Holdings better, we need to consider many other factors. Take risks, for example - DBS Group Holdings has 2 warning signs (and 1 which is a bit unpleasant) we think you should know about.

We will like DBS Group Holdings better if we see some big insider buys. While we wait, check out this free list of growing companies with considerable, recent, insider buying.

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