We often see insiders buying up shares in companies that perform well over the long term. On the other hand, we'd be remiss not to mention that insider sales have been known to precede tough periods for a business. So before you buy or sell De La Rue plc (LON:DLAR), you may well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling.
What Is Insider Selling?
It's quite normal to see company insiders, such as board members, trading in company stock, from time to time. However, most countries require that the company discloses such transactions to the market.
We don't think shareholders should simply follow insider transactions. But equally, we would consider it foolish to ignore insider transactions altogether. For example, a Columbia University study found that 'insiders are more likely to engage in open market purchases of their own company’s stock when the firm is about to reveal new agreements with customers and suppliers'.
De La Rue Insider Transactions Over The Last Year
In the last twelve months, the biggest single purchase by an insider was when Chairman Kevin Loosemore bought UK£1m worth of shares at a price of UK£1.10 per share. Even though the purchase was made at a significantly lower price than the recent price (UK£1.81), we still think insider buying is a positive. Because it occurred at a lower valuation, it doesn't tell us much about whether insiders might find today's price attractive.
Happily, we note that in the last year insiders paid UK£2.1m for 1.62m shares. But insiders sold 500.00k shares worth UK£827k. In the last twelve months there was more buying than selling by De La Rue insiders. Their average price was about UK£1.27. We don't deny that it is nice to see insiders buying stock in the company. But we must note that the investments were made at well below today's share price. You can see the insider transactions (by companies and individuals) over the last year depicted in the chart below. If you want to know exactly who sold, for how much, and when, simply click on the graph below!
There are always plenty of stocks that insiders are buying. So if that suits your style you could check each stock one by one or you could take a look at this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).
For a common shareholder, it is worth checking how many shares are held by company insiders. Usually, the higher the insider ownership, the more likely it is that insiders will be incentivised to build the company for the long term. Based on our data, De La Rue insiders have about 0.7% of the stock, worth approximately UK£2.3m. We consider this fairly low insider ownership.
So What Does This Data Suggest About De La Rue Insiders?
There haven't been any insider transactions in the last three months -- that doesn't mean much. On a brighter note, the transactions over the last year are encouraging. We'd like to see bigger individual holdings. However, we don't see anything to make us think De La Rue insiders are doubting the company. So while it's helpful to know what insiders are doing in terms of buying or selling, it's also helpful to know the risks that a particular company is facing. To that end, you should learn about the 2 warning signs we've spotted with De La Rue (including 1 which doesn't sit too well with us).
Of course De La Rue may not be the best stock to buy. So you may wish to see this free collection of high quality companies.
For the purposes of this article, insiders are those individuals who report their transactions to the relevant regulatory body. We currently account for open market transactions and private dispositions, but not derivative transactions.
This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.
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