Accelerated Earnings Growth, But What’s Ahead for Barrett Business Services, Inc. (NASDAQ:BBSI)

Barrett Business Services, Inc. (NASDAQ:BBSI) has been experiencing accelerated earnings and sales growth over the past five years.  Over that time frame the firm has seen earnings growth of 15.80% and sales growth of 18.00%.

Individual investors are constantly hearing about the next hot stock to buy. Acting purely on these types of tips can be hazardous to the portfolio if the research is not completed. Sometimes these stock tips will pan out and be correct, other times they can leave the investor wondering why they acted on the speculative advice. Even if a stock tip is correct, the results may have already been manifested and the investor would simply be getting in way too late. Knowing what information is reliable can drastically improve the chances of making smarter stock picks. Even the most praised stocks may not be able to withstand an overall market downturn. 

While the firm has enjoyed the upward movement, it’s important to look at analyst expectations and where the company is headed from here.  On a consensus basis, analysts are projecting EPS growth of 20.19% for next year and have a $93.50 one year price target on the stock.   The stock recently traded at $66.78.

 Six Fundamental Characteristics of Great Growth Stocks

#6 Huge Mass Markets – The more potential customers there are, the greater the possibility that both the company, and the investment in said company, will be a success. 

#5 Market Dominance/Barriers to Entry – Look for companies who hold patents.  This is great barrier to entry, ensuring no competition.  Look for companies who dominate the market, blowing away the competition, though market dominance can be harder to measure. 

#4 Accelerating Earnings Growth – If a company’s earnings growth rate increases for two consecutive quarters, their growth is accelerating.  Faster growth is better growth, and a company whose earnings growth rate is accelerating is an attractive investment.

#3 Triple-Digit Revenue Growth – Companies growing their revenues at triple-digit rates (100% or better) are usually smaller and less known, making them attractive for buying by institutions. 

#2 High Profit Margins – In recent decades, high-margin stocks have beaten low-margin stocks by a huge amount. 

#1 Top Notch, Innovative Management – All great managers who led their companies to success usually did so by thinking differently.  There is no surefire and quick measurement of management talent.  When you find a top manager, one with a record of prior success and accolades, you should strike.  Top managers usually find a way to overcome obstacles. 

RECENT PERFORMANCE

Let’s take a look at how the stock has been performing recently.  Over the past twelve months, Barrett Business Services, Inc. (NASDAQ:BBSI)‘s stock was 3.55%.  Over the last week of the month, it was -9.46%, -19.24% over the last quarter, and  -21.12% for the past six months. 

Earnings Per Share (EPS):

EPS is what each share is worth and indicates how much money their sharehoders would acquire if the company was to pay out all of its profits.  Earnings Per Share is computed by dividing the profit total by its share total.  If a company’s profit is $800 million and there are 40 million shares, then the EPS is $20.  EPS is a fantastic way to compare and contrast companies in the same industry.  When a company shows a steady upwards earnings trend, it is a good indicator that the company will dominate companies with a more volatile earnings trend. Barrett Business Services, Inc. (NASDAQ:BBSI)’s EPS is 3.71.  Last year, their EPS growth was 36.50% while their EPS growth over the past five years is 15.80%.  Analysts are predicting Barrett Business Services, Inc.’s stock to grow 20.19% over the next year and 15.00% over the next five.

Defining specific goals and creating an overall stock trading strategy can be a big help for the individual investor. Some investors are only interested in buy and hold strategies, while others will opt to try and capitalize on short-term market movements. Investors may also decide to do a little bit of both. They may choose a selection of stocks that they plan on holding for a long time, and they may choose others that they plan on holding for only a short period of time. Whichever way the investor decides to go, they should be prepared to complete all the research. Whether they want to study the fundamentals, technicals, or both, finding quality stocks may be at the forefront of the search.

Nothing contained in this publication is intended to constitute legal, tax, securities, or investment advice, nor an opinion regarding the appropriateness of any investment, nor a solicitation of any type. The general information contained in this publication should not be acted upon without obtaining specific legal, tax, and investment advice from a licensed professional.