Here's What Marathon Petroleum Corporation's (NYSE:MPC) Shareholder Ownership Structure Looks Like

By
Simply Wall St
Published
April 15, 2021
NYSE:MPC

If you want to know who really controls Marathon Petroleum Corporation (NYSE:MPC), then you'll have to look at the makeup of its share registry. Generally speaking, as a company grows, institutions will increase their ownership. Conversely, insiders often decrease their ownership over time. Companies that used to be publicly owned tend to have lower insider ownership.

With a market capitalization of US$35b, Marathon Petroleum is rather large. We'd expect to see institutional investors on the register. Companies of this size are usually well known to retail investors, too. Our analysis of the ownership of the company, below, shows that institutions are noticeable on the share registry. Let's delve deeper into each type of owner, to discover more about Marathon Petroleum.

Check out our latest analysis for Marathon Petroleum

ownership-breakdown
NYSE:MPC Ownership Breakdown April 15th 2021

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Marathon Petroleum?

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.

Marathon Petroleum already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own a respectable stake in the company. This can indicate that the company has a certain degree of credibility in the investment community. However, it is best to be wary of relying on the supposed validation that comes with institutional investors. They too, get it wrong sometimes. 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 Marathon Petroleum's earnings history below. Of course, the future is what really matters.

earnings-and-revenue-growth
NYSE:MPC Earnings and Revenue Growth April 15th 2021

Investors should note that institutions actually own more than half the company, so they can collectively wield significant power. We note that hedge funds don't have a meaningful investment in Marathon Petroleum. Our data shows that BlackRock, Inc. is the largest shareholder with 11% of shares outstanding. With 9.5% and 5.9% of the shares outstanding respectively, The Vanguard Group, Inc. and State Street Global Advisors, Inc. are the second and third largest shareholders.

After doing some more digging, we found that the top 23 have the combined ownership of 50% in the company, suggesting that no single shareholder has significant control over the company.

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

Insider Ownership Of Marathon Petroleum

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

Our most recent data indicates that insiders own less than 1% of Marathon Petroleum Corporation. As it is a large company, we'd only expect insiders to own a small percentage of it. But it's worth noting that they own US$203m worth of shares. It is good to see board members owning shares, but it might be worth checking if those insiders have been buying.

General Public Ownership

With a 22% ownership, the general public have some degree of sway over Marathon Petroleum. While this group can't necessarily call the shots, it can certainly have a real influence on how the company is run.

Next Steps:

While it is well worth considering the different groups that own a company, there are other factors that are even more important. Take risks for example - Marathon Petroleum has 2 warning signs (and 1 which doesn't sit too well with us) we think you should know about.

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.

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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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