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How Many Performant Financial Corporation (NASDAQ:PFMT) Shares Do Institutions Own?

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·5 min read
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If you want to know who really controls Performant Financial Corporation (NASDAQ:PFMT), then you'll have to look at the makeup of its share registry. Institutions often own shares in more established companies, while it's not unusual to see insiders own a fair bit of smaller companies. Companies that have been privatized tend to have low insider ownership.

Performant Financial is not a large company by global standards. It has a market capitalization of US$105m, which means it wouldn't have the attention of many institutional investors. Our analysis of the ownership of the company, below, shows that institutions are noticeable on the share registry. Let's take a closer look to see what the different types of shareholders can tell us about Performant Financial.

See our latest analysis for Performant Financial

ownership-breakdown
ownership-breakdown

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Performant Financial?

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.

We can see that Performant Financial 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 Performant Financial'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

It looks like hedge funds own 23% of Performant Financial 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. Looking at our data, we can see that the largest shareholder is Parthenon DCS Holdings, LLC with 25% of shares outstanding. For context, the second largest shareholder holds about 23% of the shares outstanding, followed by an ownership of 6.4% by the third-largest shareholder. Furthermore, CEO Lisa Im is the owner of 2.6% of the company's shares.

A more detailed study of the shareholder registry showed us that 3 of the top shareholders have a considerable amount of ownership in the company, via their 54% stake.

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. As far I can tell there isn't analyst coverage of the company, so it is probably flying under the radar.

Insider Ownership Of Performant Financial

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

We can see that insiders own shares in Performant Financial Corporation. As individuals, the insiders collectively own US$4.7m worth of the US$105m company. 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

The general public holds a 31% stake in Performant Financial. 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

With an ownership of 6.4%, private equity firms are in a position to play a role in shaping corporate strategy with a focus on value creation. Some might like this, because private equity are sometimes activists who hold management accountable. But other times, private equity is selling out, having taking the company public.

Private Company Ownership

It seems that Private Companies own 27%, of the Performant Financial stock. Private companies may be related parties. Sometimes insiders have an interest in a public company through a holding in a private company, rather than in their own capacity as an individual. While it's hard to draw any broad stroke conclusions, it is worth noting as an area for further research.

Next Steps:

While it is well worth considering the different groups that own a company, there are other factors that are even more important. For example, we've discovered 2 warning signs for Performant Financial (1 is a bit concerning!) that you should be aware of before investing here.

Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies.

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.

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