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If you want to know who really controls Level One Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:LEVL), then you'll have to look at the makeup of its share registry. Generally speaking, as a company grows, institutions will increase their ownership. Conversely, insiders often decrease their ownership over time. 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.
With a market capitalization of US$169m, Level One Bancorp is a small cap stock, so it might not be well known by many institutional investors. Our analysis of the ownership of the company, below, shows that institutions own shares in the company. Let's take a closer look to see what the different types of shareholders can tell us about Level One Bancorp.
What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Level One Bancorp?
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.
Level One Bancorp 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. 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 Level One Bancorp's historic earnings and revenue below, but keep in mind there's always more to the story.
We note that hedge funds don't have a meaningful investment in Level One Bancorp. Wellington Management Group LLP is currently the largest shareholder, with 11% of shares outstanding. Meanwhile, the second and third largest shareholders, hold 10% and 9.4%, of the shares outstanding, respectively. Thomas Fabbri, who is the third-largest shareholder, also happens to hold the title of Member of the Board of Directors. Additionally, the company's CEO Patrick Fehring directly holds 2.7% of the total shares outstanding.
On further inspection, we found that more than half the company's shares are owned by the top 6 shareholders, suggesting that the interests of the larger shareholders are balanced out to an extent by the smaller ones.
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 plenty of analysts covering the stock, so it might be worth seeing what they are forecasting, too.
Insider Ownership Of Level One Bancorp
While the precise definition of an insider can be subjective, almost everyone considers board members to be insiders. Management ultimately answers to the board. However, it is not uncommon for managers to be executive board members, especially if they are a founder or the CEO.
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 most recent data indicates that insiders own a reasonable proportion of Level One Bancorp, Inc.. Insiders own US$60m worth of shares in the US$169m company. This may suggest that the founders still own a lot of shares. You can click here to see if they have been buying or selling.
General Public Ownership
The general public, with a 18% stake in the company, will not easily be ignored. This size of ownership, while considerable, may not be enough to change company policy if the decision is not in sync with other large shareholders.
Private Equity Ownership
Private equity firms hold a 8.8% stake in Level One Bancorp. This suggests they can be influential in key policy decisions. Sometimes we see private equity stick around for the long term, but generally speaking they have a shorter investment horizon and -- as the name suggests -- don't invest in public companies much. After some time they may look to sell and redeploy capital elsewhere.
It's always worth thinking about the different groups who own shares in a company. But to understand Level One Bancorp better, we need to consider many other factors. Consider risks, for instance. Every company has them, and we've spotted 1 warning sign for Level One Bancorp you should know about.
Ultimately the future is most important. You can access this free report on analyst forecasts for the company.
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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