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Could Middlefield Banc Corp.'s (NASDAQ:MBCN) Investor Composition Influence The Stock Price?

Simply Wall St

The big shareholder groups in Middlefield Banc Corp. (NASDAQ:MBCN) have power over the company. Large companies usually have institutions as shareholders, and we usually see insiders owning shares in smaller companies. Warren Buffett said that he likes 'a business with enduring competitive advantages that is run by able and owner-oriented people'. So it's nice to see some insider ownership, because it may suggest that management is owner-oriented.

Middlefield Banc is not a large company by global standards. It has a market capitalization of US$162m, which means it wouldn't have the attention of many institutional investors. Taking a look at our data on the ownership groups (below), it's seems that institutional investors have bought into the company. We can zoom in on the different ownership groups, to learn more about MBCN.

Check out our latest analysis for Middlefield Banc

NasdaqCM:MBCN Ownership Summary, September 20th 2019

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Middlefield Banc?

Institutions typically measure themselves against a benchmark when reporting to their own investors, so they often become more enthusiastic about a stock once it's included in a major index. We would expect most companies to have some institutions on the register, especially if they are growing.

Middlefield Banc already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own 30% of 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 Middlefield Banc's earnings history, below. Of course, the future is what really matters.

NasdaqCM:MBCN Income Statement, September 20th 2019

We note that hedge funds don't have a meaningful investment in Middlefield Banc. There is some analyst coverage of the stock, but it could still become more well known, with time.

Insider Ownership Of Middlefield Banc

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. Company management run the business, but the CEO will answer to the board, even if he or she is a member of it.

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 Middlefield Banc Corp.. As individuals, the insiders collectively own US$11m worth of the US$162m company. It is good to see some investment by insiders, but I usually like to see higher insider holdings. It might be worth checking if those insiders have been buying.

General Public Ownership

The general public, mostly retail investors, hold a substantial 63% stake in MBCN, suggesting it is a fairly popular stock. This size of ownership gives retail investors collective power. They can and probably do influence decisions on executive compensation, dividend policies and proposed business acquisitions.

Next Steps:

While it is well worth considering the different groups that own a company, there are other factors that are even more important.

I always like to check for a history of revenue growth. You can too, by accessing this free chart of historic revenue and earnings in this detailed graph.

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.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. 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. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.