For beginners, it can seem like a good idea (and an exciting prospect) to buy a company that tells a good story to investors, even if it completely lacks a track record of revenue and profit. And in their study titled Who Falls Prey to the Wolf of Wall Street?’ Leuz et. al. found that it is ‘quite common’ for investors to lose money by buying into ‘pump and dump’ schemes.
So if you’re like me, you might be more interested in profitable, growing companies, like BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings (NYSE:BJ). Even if the shares are fully valued today, most capitalists would recognize its profits as the demonstration of steady value generation. While a well funded company may sustain losses for years, unless its owners have an endless appetite for subsidizing the customer, it will need to generate a profit eventually, or else breathe its last breath.
How Fast Is BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings Growing?
As one of my mentors once told me, share price follows earnings per share (EPS). That makes EPS growth an attractive quality for any company. I, for one, am blown away by the fact that BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings has grown EPS by 59% per year, over the last three years. While that sort of growth rate isn’t sustainable for long, it certainly catches my attention; like a crow with a sparkly stone.
One way to double-check a company’s growth is to look at how its revenue, and earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) margins are changing. While we note BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings’s EBIT margins were flat over the last year, revenue grew by a solid 10% to US$14b. That’s progress.
The chart below shows how the company’s bottom and top lines have progressed over time. To see the actual numbers, click on the chart.
Of course the knack is to find stocks that have their best days in the future, not in the past. You could base your opinion on past performance, of course, but you may also want to check this interactive graph of professional analyst EPS forecasts for BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings.
Are BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?
Since BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings has a market capitalization of US$5.6b, we wouldn’t expect insiders to hold a large percentage of shares. But we are reassured by the fact they have invested in the company. Given insiders own a small fortune of shares, currently valued at US$78m, they have plenty of motivation to push the business to succeed. That’s certainly enough to make me think that management will be very focussed on long term growth.
It means a lot to see insiders invested in the business, but I find myself wondering if remuneration policies are shareholder friendly. Well, based on the CEO pay, I’d say they are indeed. For companies with market capitalizations between US$4.0b and US$12b, like BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings, the median CEO pay is around US$7.2m.
BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings offered total compensation worth US$4.5m to its CEO in the year to . That seems pretty reasonable, especially given its below the median for similar sized companies. While the level of CEO compensation isn’t a huge factor in my view of the company, modest remuneration is a positive, because it suggests that the board keeps shareholder interests in mind. I’d also argue reasonable pay levels attest to good decision making more generally.
Should You Add BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings To Your Watchlist?
BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings’s earnings per share growth have been levitating higher, like a mountain goat scaling the Alps. The sweetener is that insiders have a mountain of stock, and the CEO remuneration is quite reasonable. The sharp increase in earnings could signal good business momentum. BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings certainly ticks a few of my boxes, so I think it’s probably well worth further consideration. We don’t want to rain on the parade too much, but we did also find 1 warning sign for BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings that you need to be mindful of.
Although BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings certainly looks good to me, I would like it more if insiders were buying up shares. If you like to see insider buying, too, then this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying, could be exactly what you’re looking for.
Please note the insider transactions discussed in this article refer to reportable transactions in the relevant jurisdiction.
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. 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.