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Every investor in Li Auto Inc. (NASDAQ:LI) should be aware of the most powerful shareholder groups. Large companies usually have institutions as shareholders, and we usually see insiders owning shares in smaller companies. Warren Buffett said that he likes “a business with enduring competitive advantages that is run by able and owner-oriented people.” So it’s nice to see some insider ownership, because it may suggest that management is owner-oriented.

With a market capitalization of US$33b, Li Auto 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. Taking a look at our data on the ownership groups (below), it seems that institutions are noticeable on the share registry. We can zoom in on the different ownership groups, to learn more about Li Auto.

Check out our latest analysis for Li Auto

ownership-breakdown

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Li Auto?

Many institutions measure their performance against an index that approximates the local market. So they usually pay more attention to companies that are included in major indices.

As you can see, institutional investors have a fair amount of stake in Li Auto. 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. It is not uncommon to see a big share price drop if two large institutional investors try to sell out of a stock at the same time. So it is worth checking the past earnings trajectory of Li Auto, (below). Of course, keep in mind that there are other factors to consider, too.

earnings-and-revenue-growth

Li Auto is not owned by hedge funds. With a 23% stake, CEO Xiang Li is the largest shareholder. Meanwhile, the second and third largest shareholders, hold 13% and 6.6%, of the shares outstanding, respectively. Interestingly, the third-largest shareholder, Xing Wang is also a Member of the Board of Directors, again, indicating strong insider ownership amongst the company’s top shareholders.

We also observed that the top 6 shareholders account for more than half of the share register, with a few smaller shareholders to balance the interests of the larger ones to a certain extent.

Researching institutional ownership is a good way to gauge and filter a stock’s expected performance. The same can be achieved by studying analyst sentiments. 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 Li Auto

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. 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.

It seems insiders own a significant proportion of Li Auto Inc.. It is very interesting to see that insiders have a meaningful US$10b stake in this US$33b business. 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– including retail investors — own 35% stake in the company, and hence can’t easily be ignored. While this group can’t necessarily call the shots, it can certainly have a real influence on how the company is run.

Private Company Ownership

Our data indicates that Private Companies hold 4.3%, of the company’s shares. It might be worth looking deeper into this. If related parties, such as insiders, have an interest in one of these private companies, that should be disclosed in the annual report. Private companies may also have a strategic interest in the company.

Public Company Ownership

It appears to us that public companies own 13% of Li Auto. This may be a strategic interest and the two companies may have related business interests. It could be that they have de-merged. This holding is probably worth investigating further.

Next Steps:

While it is well worth considering the different groups that own a company, there are other factors that are even more important. Consider for instance, the ever-present spectre of investment risk. We’ve identified 1 warning sign with Li Auto , and understanding them should be part of your investment process.

If you are like me, you may want to think about whether this company will grow or shrink. Luckily, you can check this free report showing analyst forecasts for its future.

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. 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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