public ownership

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Related to public ownership: Private ownership

Public ownership

The portion of a company's stock that is held by the public.
Copyright © 2012, Campbell R. Harvey. All Rights Reserved.

Public Ownership

1. The ownership of a company represented by a stock that is traded on the open market, either on a stock exchange or on the over-the-counter market. Individual and institutional shareholders each have a portion of this public ownership, in proportion to the amount of stock they own as a percentage of all outstanding stock. Thus, shareholders have final say in all decisions made by the company and its managers, especially through its annual shareholders' meeting. Public ownership allows a company to have greater access to financing than other companies, as they have the ability to issue more stock. However, these companies are subject to greater regulation: for example, they must file 10-K reports with the SEC on their earnings, and they are more likely to be subject to corporate taxes.

2. Ownership of a company by the government. Command economies have a large number of companies under public ownership, but even free market economies have some degree of government involvement in this form. Many countries have public ownership of one or more companies that produce their main exports. For example, many oil-rich states have oil companies under partial or total public ownership.
Farlex Financial Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All Rights Reserved

public ownership

Collins Dictionary of Economics, 4th ed. © C. Pass, B. Lowes, L. Davies 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
"Plaid Cymru is asking Welsh and UK Governments to investigate all possible interventions - from joint investment to even taking it into public ownership, such is the importance of keeping this specialist capability."
Glasgow Labour MSP Pauline McNeill added her support for a review of A-listed buildings in public ownership.
Under public ownership, we became large-scale exporters of electricity.
The REIT Act of 2009 states that the minimum public ownership for property company to remain a listed company should be at least one-third of its outstanding capital stock.
It added that, "as such, after the crossing of the tendered shares, it is expected that MRP's public ownership will fall below the minimum public ownership requirement under the amended PSE rules on minimum public ownership (MPO requirement) which requires a minimum public float of not less than 10 percent of the outstanding capital stock."
"Labour will fix this broken system by bringing the water companies into public ownership."
The rail franchise was taken into public ownership last month after joint operators Virgin and Stagecoach said they would be unable to complete their contract.
(2) In a sign of things to come on both sides of the Atlantic, the Labour government of Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Chancellor Alistair Darling stepped in with their 'least favourable option' and took Northern Rock into 'temporary' public ownership. (3) Subsequently, under Conservative Chancellor George Osborne, the bank was partitioned and its 'good assets' sold to Richard Branson's company Virgin Money, while the 'bad assets' were absorbed by the state.
DEAR Editor, This government has tried three times to off-load the East Coast Railway into the private sector and three times they have been unsuccessful, so I think that it is only right and fitting that it should be brought back into public ownership.
THE tide in favour of public ownership of the railways has turned "irreversibly" and it is only a matter of time before privatisation is "swept away", according to a union leader.

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