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The Crédit Agricole SA (EPA:ACA) Ownership Structure Could Be Important

Dane Simmons

I am going to take a deep dive into Crédit Agricole SA’s (EPA:ACA) most recent ownership structure, not a frequent subject of discussion among individual investors. When it comes to ownership structure of a company, the impact has been observed in both the long-and short-term performance of shares. The effect of an active institutional investor with a similar ownership as a passive pension-fund can be vastly different on a company’s corporate governance and accountability to shareholders. While this may be more interesting for long-term investors, short-term investors can also benefit by paying attention to when these institutions trade in order to take advantage of the heightened volatility. Now I will analyze ACA’s shareholder registry in more detail.

View our latest analysis for Crédit Agricole

ENXTPA:ACA Ownership Summary August 25th 18

Institutional Ownership

With an institutional ownership of 13.5%, ACA 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 ACA shareholders, the potential of this type of share price volatility shouldn’t be as concerning as hedge fund ownership is is not significant,indicating few chances of such sudden price moves. While that hardly seems concerning, I will explore further into ACA’s ownership type to find out how it can affect the company’s investment profile.

Insider Ownership

Insiders form a group of important ownership types as they manage the company’s operations and decide the best use of capital. Insider ownership has been linked to better alignment between management and shareholders. Although individuals in ACA hold only a minor stake, given ACA is a large-cap company, it is relatively meaningful. This is a good sign for shareholders as the company’s executives and directors have their incentives directly linked to the company’s performance. I will also like to check what insiders have been doing recently with their holdings. Insider buying may be a sign of upbeat future expectations, however, selling doesn’t necessarily mean the opposite as insiders may be motivated by their personal financial needs.

General Public Ownership

A substantial ownership of 26.1% in ACA is held by the general public. 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.

Private Company Ownership

Potential investors in ACA should also look at another important group of investors: private companies, with a stake of 56.4%, who are primarily invested because of strategic and capital gain interests. An ownership of this size indicates a strong financial backing and has the potential to influence ACA’s business strategy. Thus, investors should dig deeper into ACA’s business relations with these companies and how it can affect shareholder returns in the long-term.

Next Steps:

ACA’s considerably high level of institutional ownership calls for further analysis into its margin of safety. This will allow investors to reduce the impact of non-fundamental factors, such as volatile block trading impact on their portfolio value. However, if you are building an investment case for ACA, ownership structure alone should not dictate your decision to buy or sell the stock. Rather, you should be examining fundamental factors such as the intrinsic valuation, which is a key driver of Crédit Agricole’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 ACA’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for ACA’s outlook.
  2. Past Track Record: Has ACA 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 ACA’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.

To help readers see past the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements.

The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com.