Institutional investors control 78% of National Grid plc (LON:NG.) and were rewarded last week after stock increased 3.1%

·4 min read

A look at the shareholders of National Grid plc (LON:NG.) can tell us which group is most powerful. With 78% stake, institutions possess the maximum shares in the company. Put another way, the group faces the maximum upside potential (or downside risk).

And as as result, institutional investors reaped the most rewards after the company's stock price gained 3.1% last week. One-year return to shareholders is currently 25% and last week’s gain was the icing on the cake.

Let's delve deeper into each type of owner of National Grid, beginning with the chart below.

See our latest analysis for National Grid

ownership-breakdown
ownership-breakdown

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About National Grid?

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.

National Grid already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own a respectable stake in the company. 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. 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 National Grid's earnings history below. Of course, the future is what really matters.

earnings-and-revenue-growth
earnings-and-revenue-growth

Since institutional investors own more than half the issued stock, the board will likely have to pay attention to their preferences. National Grid is not owned by hedge funds. Looking at our data, we can see that the largest shareholder is BlackRock, Inc. with 7.4% of shares outstanding. With 4.7% and 4.5% of the shares outstanding respectively, Capital Research and Management Company and The Vanguard Group, Inc. are the second and third largest shareholders.

On studying our ownership data, we found that 25 of the top shareholders collectively own less than 50% of the share register, implying that no single individual has a majority interest.

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. Quite a few analysts cover the stock, so you could look into forecast growth quite easily.

Insider Ownership Of National Grid

While the precise definition of an insider can be subjective, almost everyone considers board members to be insiders. 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.

I generally consider insider ownership to be a good thing. However, on some occasions it makes it more difficult for other shareholders to hold the board accountable for decisions.

Our most recent data indicates that insiders own less than 1% of National Grid plc. It is a very large company, so it would be surprising to see insiders own a large proportion of the company. Though their holding amounts to less than 1%, we can see that board members collectively own UK£22m worth of shares (at current prices). It is always good to see at least some insider ownership, but it might be worth checking if those insiders have been selling.

General Public Ownership

With a 21% ownership, the general public, mostly comprising of individual investors, have some degree of sway over National Grid. While this group can't necessarily call the shots, it can certainly have a real influence on how the company is run.

Next Steps:

It's always worth thinking about the different groups who own shares in a company. But to understand National Grid better, we need to consider many other factors. To that end, you should learn about the 2 warning signs we've spotted with National Grid (including 1 which shouldn't be ignored) .

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.

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

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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