Earnings per share (EPS)

Definition:

A company's profit divided by its number of common outstanding shares. If a company earning $2 million in one year had 2 million common shares of stock outstanding, its EPS would be $1 per share. In calculating EPS, the company often uses a weighted average of shares outstanding over the reporting term. The one-year (historical or trailing) EPS growth rate is calculated as the percentage change in earnings per share. The prospective EPS growth rate is calculated as the percentage change in this year's earnings and the consensus forecast earnings for next year.

Investing Essentials


Copyright © 2011 Campbell R. Harvey, Professor of Finance, Fuqua School of Business at Duke University

Term of the Day

Currency hedge

Applies mainly to international equities. Hedging technique to guard against foreign exchange fluctuations (i.e., short Euro l00 mm when holding a long position of Euro l00 mm in stocks).

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