A shareholder is someone who owns stock in a corporation. But there is a difference between being a shareholder and understanding what it really means to be one. When you own shares in a company, you have more power than you realize over that company’s decisions. This is because owning corporate stocks gives you certain rights, such as attending annual shareholders meetings and casting votes on a wide range of topics concerning the company’s operations.
Is There a Difference Between Being a Shareholder and a Stockholder?
The terms shareholder and stockholder can both be used to describe someone who owns stock in a company, so they can be used interchangeably. When you are a shareholder (or stockholder), you are a partial owner of a company with your ownership stake determined by how many shares you purchased. A shareholder who owns 51% of a company’s shares is thereby the majority shareholder, also called the “controlling shareholder.”
What are the Benefits of Being a Shareholder?
Purchasing stock in a company is an excellent way to build wealth over time because it offers two key pathways to earning money:
- Shareholders can receive dividends from their shares and a portion of the company’s profits
- Shareholders can wait until their shares have grown in value and then sell them for a profit
Another important benefit of being a shareholder is that owning stock in a company gives you the right to vote by proxy, so you can influence important decisions in the company. From voting on board member appointments to environmental or societal concerns, your vote can not only impact the future direction of the company but also the value of your shares. For every full share you own you’re granted one vote, so the more shares you own, the more influence your votes will have.
If you own stock in a company but have never participated in a proxy vote, then you aren’t taking advantage of all your shareholder privileges. You can have an impact on the company you invest in and help ensure that its choices align with your own values, but this can only happen if you vote. Civex makes it possible to put your shareholder rights into action. We help like-minded investors meet, discuss, and act, so they can vote on the issues that matter most to them. Positive change is possible. Try Civex today and let your voice be heard.