If you want to know who really controls United Bankshares, Inc. (NASDAQ:UBSI), then you'll have to look at the makeup of its share registry. Institutions will often hold stock in bigger companies, and we expect to see insiders owning a noticeable percentage of the smaller ones. Companies that used to be publicly owned tend to have lower insider ownership.
United Bankshares is a pretty big company. It has a market capitalization of US$4.9b. Normally institutions would own a significant portion of a company this size. In the chart below, we can see 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 United Bankshares.
What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About United Bankshares?
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.
United Bankshares already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own a respectable stake in the company. This suggests some credibility amongst professional investors. But we can't rely on that fact alone since institutions make bad investments sometimes, just like everyone does. It is not uncommon to see a big share price drop if two large institutional investors try to sell out of a stock at the same time. So it is worth checking the past earnings trajectory of United Bankshares, (below). Of course, keep in mind that there are other factors to consider, too.
Institutional investors own over 50% of the company, so together than can probably strongly influence board decisions. United Bankshares is not owned by hedge funds. BlackRock, Inc. is currently the company's largest shareholder with 14% of shares outstanding. Meanwhile, the second and third largest shareholders, hold 10% and 10%, of the shares outstanding, respectively.
On further inspection, we found that more than half the company's shares are owned by the top 10 shareholders, suggesting that the interests of the larger shareholders are balanced out to an extent by the smaller ones.
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 is some analyst coverage of the stock, but it could still become more well known, with time.
Insider Ownership Of United Bankshares
The definition of company insiders can be subjective and does vary between jurisdictions. Our data reflects individual insiders, capturing board members at the very least. 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 report that insiders do own shares in United Bankshares, Inc.. The insiders have a meaningful stake worth US$102m. Most would see this as a real positive. Most would say this shows alignment of interests between shareholders and the board. Still, it might be worth checking if those insiders have been selling.
General Public Ownership
With a 29% ownership, the general public, mostly comprising of individual investors, have some degree of sway over United Bankshares. 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.
While it is well worth considering the different groups that own a company, there are other factors that are even more important. For instance, we've identified 1 warning sign for United Bankshares that you should be aware of.
If you are like me, you may want to think about whether this company will grow or shrink. Luckily, you can check this free report showing analyst forecasts for its 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.
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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.
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