The big shareholder groups in Seneca Foods Corporation (NASDAQ:SENE.A) have power over the company. Insiders often own a large chunk of younger, smaller, companies while huge companies tend to have institutions as shareholders. I quite like to see at least a little bit of insider ownership. As Charlie Munger said 'Show me the incentive and I will show you the outcome.
Seneca Foods is a smaller company with a market capitalization of US$487m, so it may still be flying under the radar of many institutional investors. Taking a look at our data on the ownership groups (below), it seems 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 Seneca Foods.
What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Seneca Foods?
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.
Seneca Foods already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own a respectable stake in the company. 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 Seneca Foods' 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. Hedge funds don't have many shares in Seneca Foods. BlackRock, Inc. is currently the company's largest shareholder with 13% of shares outstanding. For context, the second largest shareholder holds about 12% of the shares outstanding, followed by an ownership of 7.6% by the third-largest shareholder.
On further inspection, we found that more than half the company's shares are owned by the top 9 shareholders, suggesting that the interests of the larger shareholders are balanced out to an extent by the smaller ones.
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. As far I can tell there isn't analyst coverage of the company, so it is probably flying under the radar.
Insider Ownership Of Seneca Foods
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. 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.
We can see that insiders own shares in Seneca Foods Corporation. As individuals, the insiders collectively own US$48m worth of the US$487m company. It is good to see some investment by insiders, but it might be worth checking if those insiders have been buying.
General Public Ownership
With a 15% ownership, the general public have some degree of sway over Seneca Foods. 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.
It's always worth thinking about the different groups who own shares in a company. But to understand Seneca Foods better, we need to consider many other factors. Be aware that Seneca Foods is showing 1 warning sign in our investment analysis , you should know about...
Of course this may not be the best stock to buy. So take a peek at this free 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.
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