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What Kind Of Shareholders Own Aspen Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:ASPU)?

Cameron Brookes

A look at the shareholders of Aspen Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:ASPU) can tell us which group is most powerful. Insiders often own a large chunk of younger, smaller, companies while huge companies tend to have institutions as shareholders. I generally like to see some degree of insider ownership, even if only a little. As Nassim Nicholas Taleb said, ‘Don’t tell me what you think, tell me what you have in your portfolio.’

Aspen Group is a smaller company with a market capitalization of US$91m, so it may still be flying under the radar of many institutional investors. Taking a look at the our data on the ownership groups (below), it’s seems that institutions are noticeable on the share registry. We can zoom in on the different ownership groups, to learn more about ASPU.

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NasdaqCM:ASPU Ownership Summary January 23rd 19

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Aspen Group?

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.

We can see that Aspen Group does have institutional investors; and they hold 37% of the stock. 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. It is not uncommon to see a big share price drop if two large institutional investors try to sell out of a stock at the same time. So it is worth checking the past earnings trajectory of Aspen Group, (below). Of course, keep in mind that there are other factors to consider, too.

NasdaqCM:ASPU Income Statement Export January 23rd 19

It looks like hedge funds own 6.2% of Aspen Group shares. That worth noting, since hedge funds are often quite active investors, who may try to influence management. Many want to see value creation (and a higher share price) in the short term or medium term. There are plenty of analysts covering the stock, so it might be worth seeing what they are forecasting, too.

Insider Ownership Of Aspen Group

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. The company management answer to the board; and the latter should represent the interests of shareholders. Notably, sometimes top-level managers are on the board, themselves.

Most consider insider ownership a positive because it can indicate the board is well aligned with other shareholders. However, on some occasions too much power is concentrated within this group.

Our information suggests that insiders maintain a significant holding in Aspen Group, Inc.. It has a market capitalization of just US$91m, and insiders have US$12m worth of shares in their own names. It is great to see insiders so invested in the business. It might be worth checking if those insiders have been buying recently.

General Public Ownership

The general public holds a 43% stake in ASPU. While this size of ownership may not be enough to sway a policy decision in their favour, they can still make a collective impact on company policies.

Next Steps:

I find it very interesting to look at who exactly owns a company. But to truly gain insight, we need to consider other information, too.

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.

If you are like me, you may want to think about whether this company will grow or shrink. Luckily, you can check this free report showing analyst forecasts for its 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.

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.