How Much Of Esquire Financial Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:ESQ) Do Insiders Own?

If you want to know who really controls Esquire Financial Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:ESQ), then you’ll have to look at the makeup of its share registry. Insiders often own a large chunk of younger, smaller, companies while huge companies tend to have institutions as shareholders. 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.’

Esquire Financial Holdings is a smaller company with a market capitalization of US$162m, so it may still be flying under the radar of many institutional investors. Our analysis of the ownership of the company, below, shows that institutions are noticeable on the share registry. We can zoom in on the different ownership groups, to learn more about ESQ.

Check out our latest analysis for Esquire Financial Holdings

NasdaqCM:ESQ Ownership Summary, March 14th 2019
NasdaqCM:ESQ Ownership Summary, March 14th 2019

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Esquire Financial Holdings?

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.

We can see that Esquire Financial Holdings does have institutional investors; and they hold 51% of the stock. 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 Esquire Financial Holdings’s historic earnings and revenue, below, but keep in mind there’s always more to the story.

NasdaqCM:ESQ Income Statement, March 14th 2019
NasdaqCM:ESQ Income Statement, March 14th 2019

Since institutional investors own more than half the issued stock, the board will likely have to pay attention to their preferences. It looks like hedge funds own 7.5% of Esquire Financial Holdings shares. That’s interesting, because hedge funds can be quite active and activist. Many look for medium term catalysts that will drive the share price higher. There is a little analyst coverage of the stock, but not much. So there is room for it to gain more coverage.

Insider Ownership Of Esquire Financial Holdings

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 Esquire Financial Holdings, Inc.. Insiders have a US$20m stake in this US$162m business. I would say this shows alignment with shareholders, but it is worth noting that the company is still quite small; some insiders may have founded the business. You can click here to see if those insiders have been buying or selling.

General Public Ownership

The general public holds a 29% stake in ESQ. This size of ownership, while considerable, may not be enough to change company policy if the decision is not in sync with other large shareholders.

Next Steps:

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

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 .

If you would prefer discover what analysts are predicting in terms of future growth, do not miss this free report on analyst forecasts.

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.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.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.