What Kind Of Shareholder Owns Most Athabasca Oil Corporation (TSE:ATH) Stock?

A look at the shareholders of Athabasca Oil Corporation (TSE:ATH) can tell us which group is most powerful. 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 CA$542m, Athabasca Oil is a small cap stock, so it might not be well known by many institutional investors. Taking a look at the our data on the ownership groups (below), it’s seems that institutions own shares in the company. Let’s take a closer look to see what the different types of shareholder can tell us about ATH.

Check out our latest analysis for Athabasca Oil

TSX:ATH Ownership Summary January 9th 19
TSX:ATH Ownership Summary January 9th 19

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Athabasca Oil?

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.

Athabasca Oil already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own 6.8% of the company. 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. 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 Athabasca Oil’s earnings history, below. Of course, the future is what really matters.

TSX:ATH Income Statement Export January 9th 19
TSX:ATH Income Statement Export January 9th 19

Our data indicates that hedge funds own 9.8% of Athabasca Oil. That catches my attention because hedge funds sometimes try to influence management, or bring about changes that will create near term value for shareholders. Quite a few analysts cover the stock, so you could look into forecast growth quite easily.

Insider Ownership Of Athabasca Oil

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.

I generally consider insider ownership to be a good thing. However, on some occasions it makes it more difficult for other shareholders to hold the board accountable for decisions.

Our data suggests that insiders own under 1% of Athabasca Oil Corporation in their own names. It seems the board members have no more than CA$3.9m worth of shares in the CA$542m company. Many investors in smaller companies prefer to see the board more heavily invested. You can click here to see if those insiders have been buying or selling.

General Public Ownership

The general public, who are mostly retail investors, collectively hold 63% of Athabasca Oil shares. 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.

Public Company Ownership

Public companies currently own 19% of ATH stock. This may be a strategic interest and the two companies may have related business interests. It could be that they have de-merged. This holding is probably worth investigating further.

Next Steps:

While it is well worth considering the different groups that own a company, there are other factors that are even more important.

I always like to check for a history of revenue growth. You can too, by accessing this free chart of historic revenue and earnings in this detailed graph.

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.

To help readers see past the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements.

The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com.