Every investor in WVS Financial Corp. (NASDAQ:WVFC) should be aware of the most powerful shareholder groups. Institutions often own shares in more established companies, while it’s not unusual to see insiders own a fair bit of smaller companies. Warren Buffett said that he likes “a business with enduring competitive advantages that is run by able and owner-oriented people.” So it’s nice to see some insider ownership, because it may suggest that management is owner-oriented.
WVS Financial is not a large company by global standards. It has a market capitalization of US$29m, which means it wouldn’t have the attention of many institutional investors. In the chart below, we can see that institutions are noticeable on the share registry. Let’s take a closer look to see what the different types of shareholder can tell us about WVS Financial.
What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About WVS Financial?
Many institutions measure their performance against an index that approximates the local market. So they usually pay more attention to companies that are included in major indices.
WVS Financial already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own 32% of the company. This can indicate that the company has a certain degree of credibility in the investment community. However, it is best to be wary of relying on the supposed validation that comes with institutional investors. They too, get it wrong sometimes. When multiple institutions own a stock, there’s always a risk that they are in a ‘crowded trade’. When such a trade goes wrong, multiple parties may compete to sell stock fast. This risk is higher in a company without a history of growth. You can see WVS Financial’s historic earnings and revenue, below, but keep in mind there’s always more to the story.
It would appear that 7.0% of WVS Financial shares are controlled by hedge funds. That’s interesting, because hedge funds can be quite active and activist. Many look for medium term catalysts that will drive the share price higher. With a 11% stake, CEO David Bursic is the largest shareholder. The second and third largest shareholders are WVS Financial Corp., ESOP and Monongahela Capital Management Inc., holding 9.7% and 9.2%, respectively.
On studying the facts and figures more closely, we found that 6 of the top shareholders account for 55% of the register, implying that along with larger shareholders, there are a few smaller shareholders, thereby balancing out each others interests somewhat.
Researching institutional ownership is a good way to gauge and filter a stock’s expected performance. The same can be achieved by studying analyst sentiments. We’re not picking up on any analyst coverage of the stock at the moment, so the company is unlikely to be widely held.
Insider Ownership Of WVS Financial
While the precise definition of an insider can be subjective, almost everyone considers board members to be insiders. Management ultimately answers to the board. However, it is not uncommon for managers to be executive board members, especially if they are a founder or the CEO.
Insider ownership is positive when it signals leadership are thinking like the true owners of the company. However, high insider ownership can also give immense power to a small group within the company. This can be negative in some circumstances.
Our most recent data indicates that insiders own a reasonable proportion of WVS Financial Corp.. Insiders have a US$4.0m stake in this US$29m business. I would say this shows alignment with shareholders, but it is worth noting that the company is still quite small; some insiders may have founded the business. You can click here to see if those insiders have been buying or selling.
General Public Ownership
With a 38% ownership, the general public have some degree of sway over WVFC. While this size of ownership may not be enough to sway a policy decision in their favour, they can still make a collective impact on company policies.
It’s always worth thinking about the different groups who own shares in a company. But to understand WVS Financial better, we need to consider many other factors. Consider for instance, the ever-present spectre of investment risk. We’ve identified 2 warning signs with WVS Financial , and understanding them should be part of your investment process.
Of course this may not be the best stock to buy. So take a peek at this free free list of interesting companies.
NB: Figures in this article are calculated using data from the last twelve months, which refer to the 12-month period ending on the last date of the month the financial statement is dated. This may not be consistent with full year annual report figures.
If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at email@example.com. 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. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned.
We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Thank you for reading.