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Every investor in Lithia Motors, Inc. (NYSE:LAD) should be aware of the most powerful shareholder groups. 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.
With a market capitalization of US$11b, Lithia Motors is rather large. We'd expect to see institutional investors on the register. Companies of this size are usually well known to retail investors, too. In the chart below, we can see that institutions own shares in the company. We can zoom in on the different ownership groups, to learn more about Lithia Motors.
What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Lithia Motors?
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.
As you can see, institutional investors have a fair amount of stake in Lithia Motors. 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. 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 Lithia Motors' earnings history below. Of course, the future is what really matters.
Since institutional investors own more than half the issued stock, the board will likely have to pay attention to their preferences. It looks like hedge funds own 7.8% of Lithia Motors shares. That's interesting, because hedge funds can be quite active and activist. Many look for medium term catalysts that will drive the share price higher. The company's largest shareholder is BlackRock, Inc., with ownership of 11%. For context, the second largest shareholder holds about 8.4% of the shares outstanding, followed by an ownership of 7.8% by the third-largest shareholder. Additionally, the company's CEO Bryan DeBoer directly holds 0.8% of the total shares outstanding.
A closer look at our ownership figures suggests that the top 15 shareholders have a combined ownership of 50% implying that no single shareholder has a majority.
While it makes sense to study institutional ownership data for a company, it also makes sense to study analyst sentiments to know which way the wind is blowing. There are plenty of analysts covering the stock, so it might be worth seeing what they are forecasting, too.
Insider Ownership Of Lithia Motors
While the precise definition of an insider can be subjective, almost everyone considers board members to be insiders. The company management answer to the board and the latter should represent the interests of shareholders. Notably, sometimes top-level managers are on the board themselves.
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.
Shareholders would probably be interested to learn that insiders own shares in Lithia Motors, Inc.. The insiders have a meaningful stake worth US$201m. It is good to see this level of investment. You can check here to see if those insiders have been buying recently.
General Public Ownership
The general public holds a 11% stake in Lithia Motors. While this group can't necessarily call the shots, it can certainly have a real influence on how the company is run.
While it is well worth considering the different groups that own a company, there are other factors that are even more important. Take risks for example - Lithia Motors has 3 warning signs we think you should be aware of.
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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