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How Much Of Waste Connections, Inc. (NYSE:WCN) Do Institutions Own?

Simply Wall St

If you want to know who really controls Waste Connections, Inc. (NYSE:WCN), then you'll have to look at the makeup of its share registry. Insiders often own a large chunk of younger, smaller, companies while huge companies tend to have institutions as shareholders. Companies that have been privatized tend to have low insider ownership.

Waste Connections is a pretty big company. It has a market capitalization of US$23b. Normally institutions would own a significant portion of a company this size. Our analysis of the ownership of the company, below, shows that institutional investors have bought into the company. Let's delve deeper into each type of owner, to discover more about WCN.

Check out our latest analysis for Waste Connections

NYSE:WCN Ownership Summary, April 17th 2019

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Waste Connections?

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 Waste Connections does have institutional investors; and they hold 89% of the stock. 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 Waste Connections's earnings history, below. Of course, the future is what really matters.

NYSE:WCN Income Statement, April 17th 2019

Since institutional investors own more than half the issued stock, the board will likely have to pay attention to their preferences. Waste Connections is not owned by hedge funds. There are plenty of analysts covering the stock, so it might be worth seeing what they are forecasting, too.

Insider Ownership Of Waste Connections

While the precise definition of an insider can be subjective, almost everyone considers board members to be insiders. Company management run the business, but the CEO will answer to the board, even if he or she is a member of it.

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.

Our information suggests that Waste Connections, Inc. insiders own under 1% of the company. It is a very large company, so it would be surprising to see insiders own a large proportion of the company. Though their holding amount to less than 1%, we can see that board members collectively own US$61m worth of shares (at current prices). In this sort of situation, it can be more interesting to see if those insiders have been buying or selling.

General Public Ownership

The general public, with a 11% stake in the company, will not easily be ignored. 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 .

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.

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.