Is Incitec Pivot Limited (ASX:IPL) Popular Amongst Institutions?

If you want to know who really controls Incitec Pivot Limited (ASX:IPL), 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. Companies that used to be publicly owned tend to have lower insider ownership.

With a market capitalization of AU$4.1b, Incitec Pivot is a decent size, so it is probably on the radar of institutional investors. Taking a look at our data on the ownership groups (below), it seems that institutional investors have bought into the company. We can zoom in on the different ownership groups, to learn more about Incitec Pivot.

See our latest analysis for Incitec Pivot

ownership-breakdown
ASX:IPL Ownership Breakdown August 25th 2020

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Incitec Pivot?

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.

As you can see, institutional investors have a fair amount of stake in Incitec Pivot. 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 Incitec Pivot’s historic earnings and revenue below, but keep in mind there’s always more to the story.

earnings-and-revenue-growth
ASX:IPL Earnings and Revenue Growth August 25th 2020

Hedge funds don’t have many shares in Incitec Pivot. Perpetual Limited is currently the company’s largest shareholder with 8.0% of shares outstanding. Harris Associates L.P. is the second largest shareholder owning 7.9% of common stock, and Orbis Investment Management Limited holds about 4.9% of the company stock.

Our studies suggest that the top 25 shareholders collectively control less than half of the company’s shares, meaning that the company’s shares are widely disseminated and there is no dominant shareholder.

While it makes sense to study institutional ownership data for a company, it also makes sense to study analyst sentiments to know which way the wind is blowing. There are a reasonable number of analysts covering the stock, so it might be useful to find out their aggregate view on the future.

Insider Ownership Of Incitec Pivot

The definition of company insiders can be subjective and does vary between jurisdictions. Our data reflects individual insiders, capturing board members at the very least. 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.

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 data suggests that insiders own under 1% of Incitec Pivot Limited in their own names. Keep in mind that it’s a big company, and the insiders own AU$4.8m worth of shares. The absolute value might be more important than the proportional share. Arguably, recent buying and selling is just as important to consider. You can click here to see if insiders have been buying or selling.

General Public Ownership

The general public — mostly retail investors — own 55% of Incitec Pivot. With this size of ownership, retail investors can collectively play a role in decisions that affect shareholder returns, such as dividend policies and the appointment of directors. They can also exercise the power to decline an acquisition or merger that may not improve profitability.

Next Steps:

I find it very interesting to look at who exactly owns a company. But to truly gain insight, we need to consider other information, too. Case in point: We’ve spotted 2 warning signs for Incitec Pivot you should be aware of, and 1 of them is a bit unpleasant.

If you are like me, you may want to think about whether this company will grow or shrink. Luckily, you can check this free report showing analyst forecasts for its 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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