If you want to know who really controls CBS Corporation (NYSE:CBS), then you’ll have to look at the makeup of its share registry. Institutions will often hold stock in bigger companies, and we expect to see insiders owning a noticeable percentage of the smaller ones. We also tend to see lower insider ownership in companies that were previously publicly owned.
CBS is a pretty big company. It has a market capitalization of US$16b. Normally institutions would own a significant portion of a company this size. Taking a look at our data on the ownership groups (below), it’s seems that institutional investors have bought into the company. Let’s delve deeper into each type of owner, to discover more about CBS.
What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About CBS?
Institutions typically measure themselves against a benchmark when reporting to their own investors, so they often become more enthusiastic about a stock once it’s included in a major index. We would expect most companies to have some institutions on the register, especially if they are growing.
As you can see, institutional investors own 79% of CBS. 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 CBS’s historic earnings and revenue, below, but keep in mind there’s always more to the story.
Institutional investors own over 50% of the company, so together than can probably strongly influence board decisions. CBS is not owned by hedge funds. Quite a few analysts cover the stock, so you could look into forecast growth quite easily.
Insider Ownership Of CBS
While the precise definition of an insider can be subjective, almost everyone considers board members to be insiders. The company management answer to the board; and the latter should represent the interests of shareholders. Notably, sometimes top-level managers are on the board, themselves.
Most consider insider ownership a positive because it can indicate the board is well aligned with other shareholders. However, on some occasions too much power is concentrated within this group.
Our most recent data indicates that insiders own less than 1% of CBS Corporation. However, it’s possible that insiders might have an indirect interest through a more complex structure. It is a very large company, so it would be surprising to see insiders own a large proportion of the company. Though their holding amount to less than 1%, we can see that board members collectively own US$98m worth of shares (at current prices). It is good to see board members owning shares, but it might be worth checking if those insiders have been buying.
General Public Ownership
The general public, with a 10% stake in the company, will not easily be ignored. While this group can’t necessarily call the shots, it can certainly have a real influence on how the company is run.
Private Company Ownership
We can see that Private Companies own 10%, of the shares on issue. Private companies may be related parties. Sometimes insiders have an interest in a public company through a holding in a private company, rather than in their own capacity as an individual. While it’s hard to draw any broad stroke conclusions, it is worth noting as an area for further research.
It’s always worth thinking about the different groups who own shares in a company. But to understand CBS better, we need to consider many other factors.
Many find it useful to take an in depth look at how a company has performed in the past. You can access this detailed graph of past earnings, revenue and cash flow.
But ultimately it is the future, not the past, that will determine how well the owners of this business will do. Therefore we think it advisable to take a look at this free report showing whether analysts are predicting a brighter future.
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.
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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. Thank you for reading.