Common Shareholder

What is a 'Common Shareholder'

A common shareholder is an individual, business or institution that holds common shares in a company, giving the holder an ownership stake in the company. This will also give the holder the right to vote on corporate issues such as board elections and corporate policy, along with the right to any common dividend payments.

BREAKING DOWN 'Common Shareholder'

In the case of bankruptcy, common shareholders are typically the last to receive anything from liquidation. First, companies pay out all debtholders. If there is anything remaining after that, then preferred shareholders are paid, followed by common shareholders. Commons shares may also come in classes such as Class A or B, with each level having different voting rights and dividend rights.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Stock

    A type of security that signifies ownership in a corporation ...
  2. Preference Shares

    Company stock with dividends that are paid to shareholders before ...
  3. Voting Right

    The right of a stockholder to vote on matters of corporate policy ...
  4. Common Stock

    A security that represents ownership in a corporation. Holders ...
  5. Shareholder

    Any person, company or other institution that owns at least one ...
  6. Class A Shares

    A classification of common stock that may be accompanied by more ...
Related Articles
  1. Investing

    Knowing Your Rights As A Shareholder

    We delve into common stock owners' privileges and how to be vigilant in monitoring a company.
  2. Investing

    What are Preference Shares?

    Preference shares, also referred to as preferred shares, are equity shares that give the shareholders certain rights ahead of common shareholders. For instance, when the corporation declares ...
  3. Markets

    Knowing Your Rights As A Shareholder

    Common shareholders typically enjoy six main rights.
  4. Investing

    The Advantages of Preferred Dividends

    Preferred dividends are cash distributions a company pays on its preferred shares.
  5. Investing

    An Example of Dividends in Arrears

    Learn about the concept of dividends in arrears and which shares of stock guarantee payment of accrued dividends even if the company doesn't turn a profit.
  6. Investing

    Keeping Control of Your Business After the IPO

    Taking a company public doesn't mean founders must completely give up calling the shots. Before the IPO, consider these tactics to keep control after it.
  7. Investing

    What are Class B Shares?

    Class B shares are one classification of common stock issued by corporations.
  8. Markets

    How Your Vote Can Change Corporate Policy

    Shareholders are getting a bigger say in how companies are run. Find out how you can be heard.
  9. Investing

    Advising FAs: How To Explaining Stocks to a Client

    Without a doubt, common stocks are one of the greatest tools ever invented for building wealth.
  10. Markets

    4 Reasons a Company Might Suspend Its Dividend

    Learn about the four most common reasons a company may choose to suspends its dividends, including financial trouble, funding growth and unexpected expenses.
RELATED FAQS
  1. What rights do all common shareholders have?

    Learn what rights all common shareholders have, and understand the remedies that can be taken if those rights are violated ... Read Answer >>
  2. What are some characteristics of ordinary shares?

    Read about some of the primary characteristics of ordinary shares, also known as common shares, including voting rights and ... Read Answer >>
  3. What is the difference between Class A shares and other common shares of company's ...

    Discover how a company can break down its common stock into multiple classes and how these classes differ from one another ... Read Answer >>
  4. What can shareholders vote on?

    Understand the usual voting rights of common stock shareholders, along with the importance of shareholders exercising their ... Read Answer >>
  5. What are the types of share capital?

    Understand the characteristics of common stock and preferred stock, the two ways by which companies obtain share capital ... Read Answer >>
  6. What are the pros and cons of owning preferred stock instead of common stock?

    Understand and explore the advantages and disadvantages of owning preferred stock as opposed to owning common stock shares ... Read Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. Cyclical Stock

    An equity security whose price is affected by ups and downs in the overall economy. Cyclical stocks typically relate to companies ...
  2. Front Running

    The unethical practice of a broker trading an equity based on information from the analyst department before his or her clients ...
  3. After-Hours Trading - AHT

    Trading after regular trading hours on the major exchanges. The increasing popularity of electronic communication networks ...
  4. Omnibus Account

    An account between two futures merchants (brokers). It involves the transaction of individual accounts which are combined ...
  5. Weighted Average Life - WAL

    The average number of years for which each dollar of unpaid principal on a loan or mortgage remains outstanding. Once calculated, ...
  6. Real Rate Of Return

    The annual percentage return realized on an investment, which is adjusted for changes in prices due to inflation or other ...
Trading Center