Free Float: Strong Growth in European Interest

According to our shareholder analysis (Dec. 31, 2016), the number of shareholders in the USA once again decreased substantially during the year. In December 2015, the level of US-held shares was 47 percent. A year later, it was 29 percent. The level of German-held shares rose to 31 percent (2015: 22 percent). Our strongest shareholder growth in 2016 came from the UK, where investors held 15 percent of the shares (2015: 7 percent). Share ownership declined in Canada (from 8 percent to 5 percent) and in Switzerland (from 4 percent to 3 percent). On the other hand, shares held by investors from the rest of Europe – excluding Germany, Switzerland and the UK – increased from 11 percent to 17 percent.