Who Really Owns Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX)?

Today, I will be analyzing Netflix Inc’s (NASDAQ:NFLX) recent ownership structure, an important but not-so-popular subject among individual investors. A company’s ownership structure is often linked to its share performance in both the long- and short-term. Differences in ownership structure of companies can have a profound effect on how management’s incentives are aligned with shareholder returns, and whether they adhere to corporate governance best practices. Although this is an important factor for long-term investors, many investors can also be impacted by institutional presence and their high-volume trading. Now I will analyze NFLX’s shareholder registry in more detail.

Check out our latest analysis for Netflix
NasdaqGS:NFLX Ownership_summary May 24th 18
NasdaqGS:NFLX Ownership_summary May 24th 18

Institutional Ownership

With an institutional ownership of 78.97%, NFLX can face volatile stock price movements if institutions execute block trades on the open market, more so, when there are relatively small amounts of shares available on the market to trade However, as not all institutions are alike, such high volatility events, especially in the short-term, have been more frequently linked to active market participants like hedge funds. For shareholders in NFLX, sharp price movements may not be a major concern as active hedge funds hold a relatively small stake in the company. Although this doesn’t necessarily lead to high short-term volatility, we should dig deeper into NFLX’s ownership structure to find how the remaining owner types can affect its investment profile.

Insider Ownership

Another important group of shareholders are company insiders. Insider ownership has to do more with how the company is managed and less to do with the direct impact of the magnitude of shares trading on the market. NFLX insiders may only hold a 1.52% stake in the company, but this is a relatively significant holding given it is a large-cap stock. A higher level of insider ownership has been linked to management executing on high-returning projects instead of expansion projects for the sake of apparent growth. It would also be interesting to check what insiders have been doing with their shareholding recently. Insider buying can be a positive indicator of future performance, but a selling decision can be simply driven by personal financial requirements.

General Public Ownership

A substantial ownership of 19.51% in NFLX is held by the general public. This size of ownership gives retail investors collective power in deciding on major policy decisions such as executive compensation, appointment of directors and acquisitions of businesses. This level of ownership gives retail investors the power to sway key policy decisions such as board composition, executive compensation, and potential acquisitions. This is a positive sign for an investor who wants to be involved in key decision-making of the company.

Next Steps:

NFLX’s considerably high level of institutional ownership calls for further analysis into its margin of safety. This is to avoid getting trapped in a sustained sell-off that is often observed in stocks with this level of institutional participation. However, if you are building an investment case for NFLX, ownership structure alone should not dictate your decision to buy or sell the stock. Instead, you should be evaluating company-specific factors such as the intrinsic valuation, which is a key driver of Netflix’s share price. I urge you to complete your research by taking a look at the following:

  1. Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for NFLX’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for NFLX’s outlook.
  2. Past Track Record: Has NFLX been consistently performing well irrespective of the ups and downs in the market? Go into more detail in the past performance analysis and take a look at the free visual representations of NFLX’s historicals for more clarity.
  3. Other High-Performing Stocks: Are there other stocks that provide better prospects with proven track records? Explore our free list of these great stocks here.
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.