If you want to know who really controls Alexander & Baldwin, Inc. (NYSE:ALEX), then you'll have to look at the makeup of its share registry. The group holding the most number of shares in the company, around 88% to be precise, is institutions. That is, the group stands to benefit the most if the stock rises (or lose the most if there is a downturn).
And last week, institutional investors ended up benefitting the most after the company hit US$1.7b in market cap. The one-year return on investment is currently 25% and last week's gain would have been more than welcomed.
In the chart below, we zoom in on the different ownership groups of Alexander & Baldwin.
What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Alexander & Baldwin?
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.
As you can see, institutional investors have a fair amount of stake in Alexander & Baldwin. This suggests some credibility amongst professional investors. But we can't rely on that fact alone since institutions make bad investments sometimes, just like everyone does. 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 Alexander & Baldwin's historic earnings and revenue below, but keep in mind there's always more to the story.
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 Alexander & Baldwin. The company's largest shareholder is BlackRock, Inc., with ownership of 19%. The Vanguard Group, Inc. is the second largest shareholder owning 16% of common stock, and State Street Global Advisors, Inc. holds about 4.8% of the company stock.
We did some more digging and found that 7 of the top shareholders account for roughly 51% of the register, implying that along with larger shareholders, there are a few smaller shareholders, thereby balancing out each others interests somewhat.
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. While there is some analyst coverage, the company is probably not widely covered. So it could gain more attention, down the track.
Insider Ownership Of Alexander & Baldwin
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.
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.
We can report that insiders do own shares in Alexander & Baldwin, Inc.. This is a big company, so it is good to see this level of alignment. Insiders own US$19m 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 10% ownership, the general public, mostly comprising of individual investors, have some degree of sway over Alexander & Baldwin. While this group can't necessarily call the shots, it can certainly have a real influence on how the company is run.
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 - Alexander & Baldwin has 3 warning signs we think you should be aware of.
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.
This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. 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.