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What Kind Of Shareholders Own Northwest Natural Holding Company (NYSE:NWN)?

Simply Wall St

Every investor in Northwest Natural Holding Company (NYSE:NWN) should be aware of the most powerful shareholder groups. Insiders often own a large chunk of younger, smaller, companies while huge companies tend to have institutions as shareholders. We also tend to see lower insider ownership in companies that were previously publicly owned.

With a market capitalization of US$2.1b, Northwest Natural Holding is a decent size, so it is probably on the radar of institutional investors. In the chart below below, we can see that institutions are noticeable on the share registry. We can zoom in on the different ownership groups, to learn more about NWN.

See our latest analysis for Northwest Natural Holding

NYSE:NWN Ownership Summary, August 13th 2019

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Northwest Natural Holding?

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.

Northwest Natural Holding already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own 69% of the company. This implies the analysts working for those institutions have looked at the stock and they like it. But just like anyone else, they could be wrong. 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 Northwest Natural Holding's historic earnings and revenue, below, but keep in mind there's always more to the story.

NYSE:NWN Income Statement, August 13th 2019

Investors should note that institutions actually own more than half the company, so they can collectively wield significant power. Hedge funds don't have many shares in Northwest Natural Holding. There are a reasonable number of analysts covering the stock, so it might be useful to find out their aggregate view on the future.

Insider Ownership Of Northwest Natural Holding

The definition of an insider can differ slightly between different countries, but members of the board of directors always count. 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.

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.

Our information suggests that Northwest Natural Holding Company insiders own under 1% of the company. Keep in mind that it's a big company, and the insiders own US$15m worth of shares. The absolute value might be more important than the proportional share. It is always good to see at least some insider ownership, but it might be worth checking if those insiders have been selling.

General Public Ownership

The general public holds a 31% stake in NWN. 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:

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

Many find it useful to take an in depth look at how a company has performed in the past. You can access this detailed graph of past earnings, revenue and cash flow .

If you would prefer discover what analysts are predicting in terms of future growth, do not miss this free report on analyst forecasts.

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.