What Kind Of Shareholders Hold The Majority In Associated Banc-Corp’s (NYSE:ASB) Shares?

Every investor in Associated Banc-Corp (NYSE:ASB) 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. Companies that used to be publicly owned tend to have lower insider ownership.

With a market capitalization of US$2.1b, Associated Banc-Corp is a decent size, so it is probably on the radar of institutional investors. In the chart below, we can see that institutions are noticeable on the share registry. We can zoom in on the different ownership groups, to learn more about Associated Banc-Corp.

Check out our latest analysis for Associated Banc-Corp

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NYSE:ASB Ownership Breakdown August 9th 2020

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Associated Banc-Corp?

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 have a fair amount of stake in Associated Banc-Corp. This implies the analysts working for those institutions have looked at the stock and they like it. But just like anyone else, they could be wrong. 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 Associated Banc-Corp’s historic earnings and revenue, below, but keep in mind there’s always more to the story.

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NYSE:ASB Earnings and Revenue Growth August 9th 2020

Investors should note that institutions actually own more than half the company, so they can collectively wield significant power. Associated Banc-Corp is not owned by hedge funds. The Vanguard Group, Inc. is currently the company’s largest shareholder with 11% of shares outstanding. With 9.9% and 7.4% of the shares outstanding respectively, BlackRock, Inc. and Dimensional Fund Advisors L.P. are the second and third largest shareholders. In addition, we found that Philip Flynn, the CEO has 0.005305600000000001 of the shares allocated to his name

Looking at the shareholder registry, we can see that 51% of the ownership is controlled by the top 13 shareholders, meaning that no one shareholder has a majority interest in the ownership.

While studying institutional ownership for a company can add value to your research, it is also a good practice to research analyst recommendations to get a deeper understand of a stock’s expected performance. Quite a few analysts cover the stock, so you could look into forecast growth quite easily.

Insider Ownership Of Associated Banc-Corp

The definition of an insider can differ slightly between different countries, but members of the board of directors always count. Company management run the business, but the CEO will answer to the board, even if he or she is a member of it.

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.

We can see that insiders own shares in Associated Banc-Corp. It is a pretty big company, so it is generally a positive to see some potentially meaningful alignment. In this case, they own around US$39m worth of shares (at current prices). Most would say this shows alignment of interests between shareholders and the board. Still, it might be worth checking if those insiders have been selling.

General Public Ownership

The general public, with a 21% 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.

Next Steps:

It’s always worth thinking about the different groups who own shares in a company. But to understand Associated Banc-Corp better, we need to consider many other factors. Like risks, for instance. Every company has them, and we’ve spotted 2 warning signs for Associated Banc-Corp (of which 1 is concerning!) you should know about.

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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