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RELX PLC (LON:REL) is largely controlled by institutional shareholders who own 71% of the company

Key Insights

  • Institutions' substantial holdings in RELX implies that they have significant influence over the company's share price

  • A total of 25 investors have a majority stake in the company with 44% ownership

  • Insiders have sold recently

Every investor in RELX PLC (LON:REL) should be aware of the most powerful shareholder groups. We can see that institutions own the lion's share in the company with 71% ownership. In other words, the group stands to gain the most (or lose the most) from their investment into the company.

Given the vast amount of money and research capacities at their disposal, institutional ownership tends to carry a lot 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 RELX.

See our latest analysis for RELX

ownership-breakdown
ownership-breakdown

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About RELX?

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.

We can see that RELX does have institutional investors; and they hold a good portion of the company's stock. 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 RELX's earnings history below. Of course, the future is what really matters.

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

Institutional investors own over 50% of the company, so together than can probably strongly influence board decisions. Hedge funds don't have many shares in RELX. BlackRock, Inc. is currently the company's largest shareholder with 10% of shares outstanding. Meanwhile, the second and third largest shareholders, hold 4.7% and 2.8%, of the shares outstanding, respectively.

A deeper look at our ownership data shows that the top 25 shareholders collectively hold less than half of the register, suggesting a large group of small holders where no single shareholder has a majority.

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 plenty of analysts covering the stock, so it might be worth seeing what they are forecasting, too.

Insider Ownership Of RELX

The definition of an insider can differ slightly between different countries, but members of the board of directors always count. 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.

Our data suggests that insiders own under 1% of RELX PLC in their own names. Being so large, we would not expect insiders to own a large proportion of the stock. Collectively, they own UK£65m of stock. It is good to see board members owning shares, but it might be worth checking if those insiders have been buying.

General Public Ownership

With a 28% ownership, the general public, mostly comprising of individual investors, have some degree of sway over RELX. While this group can't necessarily call the shots, it can certainly have a real influence on how the company is run.

Next Steps:

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 2 warning signs for RELX that 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.