Close this search box.

Table of Contents

Reverse Stock Split


A reverse stock split is a corporate action that reduces the total number of a company’s outstanding shares. It increases the price of each remaining share, but doesn’t alter the company’s market capitalization. For example, a 1-for-2 reverse split would convert every two shares into one, doubling the price per share.


The phonetic pronunciation of “Reverse Stock Split” is: rih- vurs stahk split

Key Takeaways

  1. Consolidation: A Reverse Stock Split refers to the process undertaken by companies to reduce their number of shares outstanding in the market. This can lead to an increase in the share price as each share now represents a greater percentage of the company’s equity.
  2. Improved Market Perception: Reverse splits are often perceived as a method used by companies to prevent their stock from being delisted from stock exchanges that have minimum price requirements. While it doesn’t change the intrinsic value or the company’s financial situation, it can potentially improve the market’s perception of the company.
  3. Uncertain Impact: The effect of a reverse stock split on a company’s stock price post-split can be uncertain. While the price will mechanically increase due to fewer shares, the market’s reaction and future effects on the price could be either positive or negative based on the fundamental health of the company.


A reverse stock split is a significant business/finance term as it alters the number of a company’s outstanding shares and its share price without changing the company’s market capitalization. Essentially, it reduces the number of shares a company has in circulation, which increases the per-share price. This process can be essential for a company to maintain its listing status on a stock exchange, which often requires a minimum share price to prevent delisting. A reverse stock split can also improve a company’s image in the eyes of potential investors by indicating a higher per-share price, which could be seen as a sign of stability and financial health. Overall, a reverse stock split can significantly impact a company’s market presence and investor perceptions.


A reverse stock split is a corporate maneuver intended to increase the price per share of a company’s stock. This is typically used by organizations that believe their share price is too low to be attractive to investors. Investors, particularly institutional ones, may perceive a stock with a very low price as inherently risky, or they may be prohibited by internal bylaws or guidelines from investing in stocks that fall beneath a certain price. A low share price also carries the risk of a company being delisted from certain stock exchanges, which have minimum price requirements. In these scenarios, a reverse stock split can be an effective tool for boosting share price.Reverse stock splits can also lead to a more manageable number of outstanding shares. When a company performs a reverse stock split, it reduces the number of its outstanding shares in the market, which can result in a rise in earnings per share (EPS), a metric investors use regularly to gauge a company’s profitability. While it’s important to remember that a reverse split doesn’t change the intrinsic value of a company – the market capitalization stays the same, since the price increase is offset by a reduction in number of shares – an increased EPS can make the stock seem more attractive from a valuation standpoint. Thus, reverse stock splits can be instrumental in managing investor perception and meeting exchange listing requirements.


1. Citigroup 1-for-10 Reverse Stock Split in 2011: After the financial crisis of 2008, Citigroup stock was trading at very low levels. In order to lift the share price and restore investor confidence, Citigroup executed a 1-for-10 reverse stock split in May 2011. For every ten shares that investors owned, they received one new share, driving the share prices up tenfold overnight.2. American International Group (AIG) Reverse Stock Split in 2009: The giant insurance company, AIG, suffered severe losses due to risky investments related to subprime mortgages. In order to push its share price up and avoid delisting from the New York Stock Exchange, AIG implemented a 1-for-20 reverse stock split in 2009. 3. Priceline 1-for-6 Reverse Stock Split in 2003: After the dot-com bubble burst, Priceline’s share price fell from over $900 to less than $10. In order to improve the image of their stock and attract more institutional investors, the company conducted a 1-for-6 reverse stock split in 2003, effectively multiplying its per-share price by six.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

What is a Reverse Stock Split?

A Reverse Stock Split is a corporate action in which a company decreases the total number of outstanding shares it has while maintaining the same market capitalization. The value of each share increases as the number of shares decreases.

Why would a company decide to do a Reverse Stock Split?

Companies often choose to do a Reverse Stock Split to boost the price of each share if it’s fallen too low, in order to look more attractive to investors or to meet stock exchange listing requirements.

Does a Reverse Stock Split impact a company’s value or market capitalization?

No, a Reverse Stock Split does not change a company’s overall market value or capitalization. It simply reduces the number of shares and increases the price per share.

How does a Reverse Stock Split affect shareholders?

Shareholders will find their total number of shares held reduced, while the value of each share increases. There’s no immediate monetary gain or loss for investors as the total value of their holdings remains the same.

Will a Reverse Stock Split affect dividends?

It can. After a Reverse Stock Split, the per-share dividend might be higher because the number of shares has been reduced. However, the overall amount of all dividends paid doesn’t change.

Can a Reverse Stock Split be seen as a negative indication about a company’s financial health?

It could be. Companies usually opt for Reverse Stock Splits when their stock prices are low. Many associate low stocks prices with companies in financial trouble, although this is not always the case.

How is a Reverse Stock Split executed?

The execution process of a reverse stock split involves a proposal by the company’s board of directors, followed by a vote by shareholders. If approved, the company will then consolidate the shares. It is usually expressed in ratios, such as 1-for-2, 1-for-10, etc.

Does a Reverse Stock Split result in any tax implications for shareholders?

Generally, a Reverse Stock Split does not create a taxable event for shareholders. Any taxation occurs only on successfully selling the shares following the split. However, tax laws vary by location, so it’s always best to consult with a tax advisor or accountant.

Related Finance Terms

  • Consolidation of Shares
  • Reduced Share Count
  • Increased Share Price
  • Shareholder Value
  • Dilution Protection

Sources for More Information

About Our Editorial Process

At Due, we are dedicated to providing simple money and retirement advice that can make a big impact in your life. Our team closely follows market shifts and deeply understands how to build REAL wealth. All of our articles undergo thorough editing and review by financial experts, ensuring you get reliable and credible money advice.

We partner with leading publications, such as Nasdaq, The Globe and Mail, Entrepreneur, and more, to provide insights on retirement, current markets, and more.

We also host a financial glossary of over 7000 money/investing terms to help you learn more about how to take control of your finances.

View our editorial process

About Our Journalists

Our journalists are not just trusted, certified financial advisers. They are experienced and leading influencers in the financial realm, trusted by millions to provide advice about money. We handpick the best of the best, so you get advice from real experts. Our goal is to educate and inform, NOT to be a ‘stock-picker’ or ‘market-caller.’ 

Why listen to what we have to say?

While Due does not know how to predict the market in the short-term, our team of experts DOES know how you can make smart financial decisions to plan for retirement in the long-term.

View our expert review board

About Due

Due makes it easier to retire on your terms. We give you a realistic view on exactly where you’re at financially so when you retire you know how much money you’ll get each month. Get started today.

Due Fact-Checking Standards and Processes

To ensure we’re putting out the highest content standards, we sought out the help of certified financial experts and accredited individuals to verify our advice. We also rely on them for the most up to date information and data to make sure our in-depth research has the facts right, for today… Not yesterday. Our financial expert review board allows our readers to not only trust the information they are reading but to act on it as well. Most of our authors are CFP (Certified Financial Planners) or CRPC (Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor) certified and all have college degrees. Learn more about annuities, retirement advice and take the correct steps towards financial freedom and knowing exactly where you stand today. Learn everything about our top-notch financial expert reviews below… Learn More