Transfer Agent Market Share – 2020

Note: This analysis was updated on February 1, 2021 to reflect data pulled on January 14, 2021, which looks at the transfer agent market share across listed companies.

Since 2012, the market share for transfer agents engaged by active SEC registrants has remained fairly stagnant. The most notable change comes from Equiniti Trust – breaking the Top 5 for the first time.

As noted in last year’s analysis, Wells Fargo Bank NA/TA sold its Shareowner Services to Equiniti Trust Co. (part of Equiniti Group plc) in 2018, which explains why we don’t see them in this year’s Top 5, but may also explain the increase in market share for Equiniti.

We see another notable change when looking at Continental Stock Transfer & Trust, which now accounts for 5.6% of the market share, up from 4.3% last year.1

Transfer agents are appointed by companies with publicly traded securities to track individuals that own their stocks and bonds. Audit Analytics examines this market share on an annual basis, looking at the absolute number of clients.

Similar to overall market share, there has been consistency among transfer agent market share for initial public offerings (IPOs). This year, however, Continental Stock Transfer & Trust moved into the spotlight, holding nearly 50% of the IPO market share.

Though this has caused some significant movement across the IPO market share, together, these top five agents account for 92% of the IPO market.

Transfer Agent Market Share- IPO

As mentioned in our most recent quarterly IPO analysis, after remaining somewhat stagnant in late Q1 and early Q2 due to the unprecedented coronavirus pandemic, IPO activity rebounded in the third quarter. It’s important to note that these percentages could shift pending further Q4 activity.

This analysis uses data from the Transfer Agents database, powered by Audit Analytics.


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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.