What Is The Ownership Structure Like For Australian Finance Group Limited (ASX:AFG)?

By
Simply Wall St
Published
October 16, 2020
ASX:AFG

A look at the shareholders of Australian Finance Group Limited (ASX:AFG) can tell us which group is most powerful. Generally speaking, as a company grows, institutions will increase their ownership. Conversely, insiders often decrease their ownership over time. I quite like to see at least a little bit of insider ownership. As Charlie Munger said 'Show me the incentive and I will show you the outcome.

With a market capitalization of AU$609m, Australian Finance Group is a small cap stock, so it might not be well known by many institutional investors. Our analysis of the ownership of the company, below, shows that institutional investors have bought into the company. Let's take a closer look to see what the different types of shareholders can tell us about Australian Finance Group.

See our latest analysis for Australian Finance Group

ownership-breakdown
ASX:AFG Ownership Breakdown October 16th 2020

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Australian Finance Group?

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.

Australian Finance Group already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own a respectable stake in the company. This suggests some credibility amongst professional investors. But we can't rely on that fact alone since institutions make bad investments sometimes, just like everyone does. If multiple institutions change their view on a stock at the same time, you could see the share price drop fast. It's therefore worth looking at Australian Finance Group's earnings history below. Of course, the future is what really matters.

earnings-and-revenue-growth
ASX:AFG Earnings and Revenue Growth October 16th 2020

We note that hedge funds don't have a meaningful investment in Australian Finance Group. Our data suggests that Malcolm Watkins, who is also the company's Top Key Executive, holds the most number of shares at 6.5%. When an insider holds a sizeable amount of a company's stock, investors consider it as a positive sign because it suggests that insiders are willing to have their wealth tied up in the future of the company. Meanwhile, the second and third largest shareholders, hold 6.1% and 6.0%, of the shares outstanding, respectively.

A closer look at our ownership figures suggests that the top 20 shareholders have a combined ownership of 50% implying that no single shareholder has a majority.

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. There is some analyst coverage of the stock, but it could still become more well known, with time.

Insider Ownership Of Australian Finance Group

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. 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.

It seems insiders own a significant proportion of Australian Finance Group Limited. It has a market capitalization of just AU$609m, and insiders have AU$153m worth of shares in their own names. It is great to see insiders so invested in the business. It might be worth checking if those insiders have been buying recently.

General Public Ownership

With a 49% ownership, the general public have some degree of sway over Australian Finance Group. While this group can't necessarily call the shots, it can certainly have a real influence on how the company is run.

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. Take risks for example - Australian Finance Group has 3 warning signs we think you should be aware of.

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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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. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.
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