A look at the shareholders of United Bankshares, Inc. (NASDAQ:UBSI) can tell us which group is most powerful. Insiders often own a large chunk of younger, smaller, companies while huge companies tend to have institutions as shareholders. Companies that used to be publicly owned tend to have lower insider ownership.
United Bankshares has a market capitalization of US$4.4b, so it's too big to fly under the radar. We'd expect to see both institutions and retail investors owning a portion of the company. Our analysis of the ownership of the company, below, shows that institutions own shares in the company. We can zoom in on the different ownership groups, to learn more about United Bankshares.
What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About United Bankshares?
Institutional investors commonly compare their own returns to the returns of a commonly followed index. So they generally do consider buying larger companies that are included in the relevant benchmark index.
We can see that United Bankshares does have institutional investors; and they hold a good portion of the company's 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 United Bankshares' historic earnings and revenue below, but keep in mind there's always more to the story.
Since institutional investors own more than half the issued stock, the board will likely have to pay attention to their preferences. Hedge funds don't have many shares in United Bankshares. BlackRock, Inc. is currently the company's largest shareholder with 14% of shares outstanding. With 9.6% and 8.3% of the shares outstanding respectively, The Vanguard Group, Inc. and State Street Global Advisors, Inc. are the second and third largest shareholders. Additionally, the company's CEO Richard Adams directly holds 0.7% of the total shares outstanding.
After doing some more digging, we found that the top 14 have the combined ownership of 50% in the company, suggesting that no single shareholder has significant control over the company.
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 United Bankshares
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.
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 most recent data indicates that insiders own some shares in United Bankshares, Inc.. This is a big company, so it is good to see this level of alignment. Insiders own US$89m worth of shares (at current prices). It is good to see this level of investment by insiders. You can check here to see if those insiders have been buying recently.
General Public Ownership
With a 32% ownership, the general public have some degree of sway over United Bankshares. While this size of ownership may not be enough to sway a policy decision in their favour, they can still make a collective impact on company policies.
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. Be aware that United Bankshares is showing 1 warning sign in our investment analysis , you should know about...
Ultimately the future is most important. You can access this free report on analyst forecasts for the company.
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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