Every investor in FAR Limited (ASX:FAR) should be aware of the most powerful shareholder groups. Institutions often own shares in more established companies, while it's not unusual to see insiders own a fair bit of 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.
With a market capitalization of AU$150m, FAR is a small cap stock, so it might not be well known by many institutional investors. In the chart below, we can see that institutions are noticeable on the share registry. Let's delve deeper into each type of owner, to discover more about FAR.
What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About FAR?
Many institutions measure their performance against an index that approximates the local market. So they usually pay more attention to companies that are included in major indices.
FAR already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own a respectable stake in 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 FAR's earnings history, below. Of course, the future is what really matters.
It would appear that 15% of FAR shares are controlled by hedge funds. That's interesting, because hedge funds can be quite active and activist. Many look for medium term catalysts that will drive the share price higher. Looking at our data, we can see that the largest shareholder is Meridian Capital Partners, Inc. with 15% of shares outstanding. With 12% and 5.2% of the shares outstanding respectively, Orbis Investment Management Limited and Farjoy Pty Ltd are the second and third largest shareholders.
Looking at the shareholder registry, we can see that 50% of the ownership is controlled by the top 18 shareholders, meaning that no one shareholder has a majority interest in the ownership.
While studying institutional ownership for a company can add value to your research, it is also a good practice to research analyst recommendations to get a deeper understand of a stock's expected performance. 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 FAR
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.
Insider ownership is positive when it signals leadership are thinking like the true owners of the company. However, high insider ownership can also give immense power to a small group within the company. This can be negative in some circumstances.
Shareholders would probably be interested to learn that insiders own shares in FAR Limited. It has a market capitalization of just AU$150m, and insiders have AU$7.7m worth of shares, in their own names. Some would say this shows alignment of interests between shareholders and the board, though I generally prefer to see bigger insider holdings. But it might be worth checking if those insiders have been selling.
General Public Ownership
With a 49% ownership, the general public have some degree of sway over FAR. While this group can't necessarily call the shots, it can certainly have a real influence on how the company is run.
Private Company Ownership
Our data indicates that Private Companies hold 6.6%, of the company's shares. It might be worth looking deeper into this. If related parties, such as insiders, have an interest in one of these private companies, that should be disclosed in the annual report. Private companies may also have a strategic interest in the company.
It's always worth thinking about the different groups who own shares in a company. But to understand FAR better, we need to consider many other factors. Case in point: We've spotted 4 warning signs for FAR you should be aware of, and 2 of them are a bit concerning.
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.
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. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.
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