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How Many Micro Focus International plc (LON:MCRO) Shares Do Institutions Own?

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·4 min read
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A look at the shareholders of Micro Focus International plc (LON:MCRO) can tell us which group is most powerful. Generally speaking, as a company grows, institutions will increase their ownership. Conversely, insiders often decrease their ownership over time. Companies that have been privatized tend to have low insider ownership.

Micro Focus International isn't enormous, but it's not particularly small either. It has a market capitalization of UK£1.1b, which means it would generally expect to see some institutions on the share registry. Taking a look at our data on the ownership groups (below), it seems that institutional investors have bought into the company. Let's delve deeper into each type of owner, to discover more about Micro Focus International.

View our latest analysis for Micro Focus International

ownership-breakdown
ownership-breakdown

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Micro Focus International?

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.

We can see that Micro Focus International does have institutional investors; and they hold a good portion of the company's stock. 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 Micro Focus International's historic earnings and revenue below, but keep in mind there's always more to the story.

earnings-and-revenue-growth
earnings-and-revenue-growth

Since institutional investors own more than half the issued stock, the board will likely have to pay attention to their preferences. Hedge funds don't have many shares in Micro Focus International. Dodge & Cox is currently the company's largest shareholder with 19% of shares outstanding. The second and third largest shareholders are M&G Investment Management Limited and BlackRock, Inc., with an equal amount of shares to their name at 7.2%.

We did some more digging and found that 9 of the top shareholders account for roughly 51% of the register, implying that along with larger shareholders, there are a few smaller shareholders, thereby balancing out each others interests somewhat.

Researching institutional ownership is a good way to gauge and filter a stock's expected performance. The same can be achieved by studying analyst sentiments. There are plenty of analysts covering the stock, so it might be worth seeing what they are forecasting, too.

Insider Ownership Of Micro Focus International

The definition of an insider can differ slightly between different countries, but members of the board of directors always count. Company management run the business, but the CEO will answer to the board, even if he or she is a member of it.

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 most recent data indicates that insiders own less than 1% of Micro Focus International plc. Keep in mind that it's a big company, and the insiders own UK£3.1m worth of shares. The absolute value might be more important than the proportional share. Arguably, recent buying and selling is just as important to consider. You can click here to see if insiders have been buying or selling.

General Public Ownership

The general public-- including retail investors -- own 11% stake in the company, and hence can't 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.

Next Steps:

While it is well worth considering the different groups that own a company, there are other factors that are even more important. Be aware that Micro Focus International is showing 3 warning signs in our investment analysis , 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.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. 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.