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Part of the series on
Corporate Players

Board of Directors

Business Forms

Sole Proprietorship
Closely-Held Corp.

Economic Concepts

Agency Cost
Mergers & Acquisitions
Transaction Cost
Horizontal Integration
Vertical Integration

A shareholder is an individual who owns stock in a corporation, either publicly traded ("secondary trading") or privately held. In general, the term refers to the public trading of corporate stock. A shareholder, in the corporate model, contributes capital to the operation of the business, and the officers run the corporation, using this stock. In the "economic model" of the corporation, the shareholder has the unique function of bearing risk, although the shareholder also exercises partial control through the Board of Directors.