Stock Analysis

What Type Of Shareholders Own The Most Number of Westamerica Bancorporation (NASDAQ:WABC) Shares?

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NasdaqGS:WABC
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If you want to know who really controls Westamerica Bancorporation (NASDAQ:WABC), then you'll have to look at the makeup of its share registry. Institutions will often hold stock in bigger companies, and we expect to see insiders owning a noticeable percentage of the smaller ones. We also tend to see lower insider ownership in companies that were previously publicly owned.

Westamerica Bancorporation has a market capitalization of US$1.5b, so we would expect some institutional investors to have noticed the stock. Our analysis of the ownership of the company, below, shows that institutions own shares in the company. Let's take a closer look to see what the different types of shareholders can tell us about Westamerica Bancorporation.

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ownership-breakdown
NasdaqGS:WABC Ownership Breakdown December 29th 2020

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Westamerica Bancorporation?

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.

We can see that Westamerica Bancorporation 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. 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 Westamerica Bancorporation's earnings history below. Of course, the future is what really matters.

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NasdaqGS:WABC Earnings and Revenue Growth December 29th 2020

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 Westamerica Bancorporation. Looking at our data, we can see that the largest shareholder is BlackRock, Inc. with 14% of shares outstanding. With 12% and 11% of the shares outstanding respectively, T. Rowe Price Group, Inc. and The Vanguard Group, Inc. are the second and third largest shareholders. Furthermore, CEO David Payne is the owner of 3.3% of the company's shares.

We also observed that the top 7 shareholders account for more than half of the share register, with a few smaller shareholders to balance the interests of the larger ones to a certain extent.

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. Quite a few analysts cover the stock, so you could look into forecast growth quite easily.

Insider Ownership Of Westamerica Bancorporation

The definition of an insider can differ slightly between different countries, but members of the board of directors always count. 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.

I can report that insiders do own shares in Westamerica Bancorporation. The insiders have a meaningful stake worth US$58m. Most would see this as a real positive. If you would like to explore the question of insider alignment, you can click here to see if insiders have been buying or selling.

General Public Ownership

The general public, with a 18% 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:

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. Consider risks, for instance. Every company has them, and we've spotted 1 warning sign for Westamerica Bancorporation you should know about.

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.

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