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With 88% institutional ownership, Kellanova (NYSE:K) is a favorite amongst the big guns

Key Insights

  • Given the large stake in the stock by institutions, Kellanova's stock price might be vulnerable to their trading decisions

  • A total of 9 investors have a majority stake in the company with 51% ownership

  • Recent sales by insiders

A look at the shareholders of Kellanova (NYSE:K) can tell us which group is most powerful. With 88% stake, institutions possess the maximum shares in the company. That is, the group stands to benefit the most if the stock rises (or lose the most if there is a downturn).

Because institutional owners have a huge pool of resources and liquidity, their investing decisions tend to carry a great deal of weight, especially with individual investors. As a result, a sizeable amount of institutional money invested in a firm is generally viewed as a positive attribute.

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In the chart below, we zoom in on the different ownership groups of Kellanova.

See our latest analysis for Kellanova

ownership-breakdown
ownership-breakdown

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Kellanova?

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.

Kellanova 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 Kellanova's earnings history below. Of course, the future is what really matters.

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

Investors should note that institutions actually own more than half the company, so they can collectively wield significant power. We note that hedge funds don't have a meaningful investment in Kellanova. The company's largest shareholder is W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Endowment Fund, with ownership of 15%. Meanwhile, the second and third largest shareholders, hold 9.3% and 8.5%, of the shares outstanding, respectively.

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 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. There are a reasonable number of analysts covering the stock, so it might be useful to find out their aggregate view on the future.

Insider Ownership Of Kellanova

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.

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.

Shareholders would probably be interested to learn that insiders own shares in Kellanova. It is a very large company, and board members collectively own US$272m worth of shares (at current prices). Most would say this shows a good alignment of interests between shareholders and the board. Still, it might be worth checking if those insiders have been selling.

General Public Ownership

The general public-- including retail investors -- own 11% stake in the company, and hence can't 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:

I find it very interesting to look at who exactly owns a company. But to truly gain insight, we need to consider other information, too. Case in point: We've spotted 2 warning signs for Kellanova you should be aware of.

If you would prefer discover what analysts are predicting in terms of future growth, do not miss this free report on analyst forecasts.

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.