Transfer agents are appointed by companies with publicly traded securities to track individuals that own their stocks and bonds. Audit Analytics annually examines the market share of transfer agents appointed by active SEC registrants, looking at the absolute number of clients.
Since 2012, the market share for transfer agents engaged by active SEC registrants has remained fairly stagnant. This year proves to be no different; the same five transfer agents we have seen in the top for the past several years still reign. In fact, four of the five have managed to slightly increase their respective market share compared to last year.
The exception, Wells Fargo Bank NA/TA, has shown an expected decrease in market share since our last analysis. As noted last year, Wells Fargo Bank sold its Shareowner Services to Equiniti Trust Co. (part of Equiniti Group plc).1 This may also explain the increase in market share for the non-top five transfer agents (Other), but only time will tell.
Looking at market share among IPOs, Computershare/BNY Mellon and American Stock Transfer & Trust are nearly equal; still competing with one another for the top spot.
Meanwhile, Continental Stock Transfer & Trust has increased its market share three consecutive years, climbing from 11.5% in 2016 to 19.7% in 2019.
Broadridge and Citibank, whom we haven’t seen in the top IPO transfer agent market share analysis since 2016 and 2017, respectively, tied for market share among IPO clients. Transfer agents Vstock and Deutsche Bank Trust Co Americas/TA also tied for the number of IPO clients this year.
Combined, these seven transfer agents cover over 90% of the IPO market.
It will be interesting to see how the transfer agent market share shakes out next year.
This analysis was performed using the Transfer Agent database provided by Audit Analytics. For more information on this post or access to the database, please contact us.
1. At the time of this analysis, Wells Fargo Bank NA/TA is still an active SEC transfer agent, which is why it has been kept separate from Equiniti Trust Co. figures ↩