From 1926 through 1991, a company called Eastern Airlines flew an unofficial monopoly over the northeasterly American skies. Headquartered in Miami, it was one of the “Big Four” airlines and featured hubs in Chicago, Orlando, and Tampa Bay. During the 1960s and 1970s, it had an extended period of delivering shareholders very good returns at a rate of 15.2% annually. That was because the company was reporting earnings per share growth of 13% and paid a small dividend, and investors were enamored with the stock. Around the mid-1980s, the stock started trading in the valuation range of 10-13x earnings, leading many people to think that the stock was cheap and worthy of purchase for the value investor.
If Yahoo Finance had existed back then, it would have shown steady growth and a low P/E ratio and a superficial look at the company may have induced you to buy the stock. … Read the rest of this article!