Your instant 5-share growth portfolio

One of my favourite quotes from legendary investor and Warren Buffett mentor Ben Graham is,

“In the short run, the market is a voting machine but in the long run, it is a weighing machine.”

In other words, a stock price will mirror the performance of the underlying business over the long-term. Here are five companies with growing earnings-per-share (EPS).

Global fund manager Magellan Financial Group Ltd (ASX: MFG) is led by respected stock-picker Hamish Douglas. The company was founded in 2006 and now has $39 billion under management thanks to the outperformance of its funds, Australia’s growing superannuation pool and trends favouring overseas investments.

Magellan is a highly scalable business because costs are relatively fixed which combined with surging funds under management explains how it has increased EPS by a whopping 2,700% between 2011 and 2015, albeit off a low base. I estimate that the stock is trading on a price-to-earnings ratio (PER) of less than 17 based on 2016 projections, which appears reasonable even though the company is susceptible to market swings.

ResMed Inc. (CHESS) (ASX: RMD) makes devices to treat breathing disorders during sleep and sells into more than 100 countries. Such disorders are thought to affect one in four people, but less than 20% of sufferers are diagnosed since most are unaware of their condition. The problem is more prevalent among overweight people and so both global dietary trends and rising awareness are likely to drive demand for ResMed’s products in the future.

EPS increased a respectable 68% between 2011 and 2015 and unlike Magellan, ResMed is a defensive business and therefore its profits are not as volatile. It looks like earnings in 2016 will be in line with last year at around US$350 million and so I estimate that the stock trades on a PER of 26.

As its name suggests, serial acquirer Corporate Travel Management Ltd (ASX: CTD) arranges travel for the corporate sector. The company has grown rapidly thanks to a combination of acquisitive and organic growth and has businesses in Australia, North America, Asia and Europe. It stands to benefit from the twin tailwinds of ongoing globalisation and businesses increasingly outsourcing non-core functions.

Corporate Travel recorded 106% growth in EPS between 2011 and 2015 and is on track for further improvement this year. The current share price implies a demanding PER of 45, however acquisitions made part way through the year should ensure that profits rise again in 2017.

Since it was founded in the 1930s, nutritional supplement supplier Blackmores Limited (ASX: BKL) has developed into a ubiquitous brand. The company is able to charge high prices for low cost food supplements thanks to effective marketing techniques such as employing trusted celebrities to endorse its products. Recent booming demand from Chinese consumers has caused sales to take off and could signal the start of a prolonged period of increasing profits for the company.

EPS rose 66% between 2011 and 2015 although much of this growth was generated towards the end of the period. Annualising EPS for the first half of 2016, I estimate that Blackmores is trading on a PER of 28 which is good value if you believe that demand from China is sustainable.

Sirtex Medical Limited (ASX: SRX) is one of the few ASX-listed biotechnology companies to achieve profitability. Sales of its late stage liver cancer treatment, SIR-Spheres, continue to accelerate yet market penetration remains very low. The company is hoping to demonstrate the efficacy of SIR-Spheres for treating early stage liver cancer which would multiply the addressable market for the therapy.

EPS were up 247% between 2011 and 2015 thanks to a combination of price rises, volume growth and relatively static costs. Annualised first half results indicate that the stock is trading on a PER of 35.

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Motley Fool contributor Matt Brazier has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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