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It is not uncommon to see companies perform well in the years after insiders buy shares. 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 Astec Industries, Inc. (NASDAQ:ASTE), you may well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling.
What Is Insider Selling?
It is perfectly legal for company insiders, including board members, to buy and sell stock in a company. However, rules govern insider transactions, and certain disclosures are required.
We don't think shareholders should simply follow insider transactions. But it is perfectly logical to keep tabs on what insiders are doing. For example, a Harvard University study found that 'insider purchases earn abnormal returns of more than 6% per year.'
The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At Astec Industries
In the last twelve months, the biggest single purchase by an insider was when Group President of Infrastructure Jaco van der Merwe bought US$66k worth of shares at a price of US$32.75 per share. That means that even when the share price was higher than US$30.30 (the recent price), an insider wanted to purchase shares. Their view may have changed since then, but at least it shows they felt optimistic at the time. In our view, the price an insider pays for shares is very important. It is encouraging to see an insider paid above the current price for shares, as it suggests they saw value, even at higher levels. Jaco van der Merwe was the only individual insider to buy shares in the last twelve months.
You can see the insider transactions (by 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!
Astec Industries is not the only stock insiders are buying. So take a peek at this free list of growing companies with insider buying.
Insider Ownership of Astec Industries
Looking at the total insider shareholdings in a company can help to inform your view of whether they are well aligned with common shareholders. I reckon it's a good sign if insiders own a significant number of shares in the company. Insiders own 1.8% of Astec Industries shares, worth about US$12m. We've certainly seen higher levels of insider ownership elsewhere, but these holdings are enough to suggest alignment between insiders and the other shareholders.
So What Do The Astec Industries Insider Transactions Indicate?
It's certainly positive to see the recent insider purchase. We also take confidence from the longer term picture of insider transactions. But on the other hand, the company made a loss last year, which makes us a little cautious. Given that insiders also own a fair bit of Astec Industries we think they are probably pretty confident of a bright future. Therefore, you should should definitely take a look at this FREE report showing analyst forecasts for Astec Industries.
If you would prefer to check out another company -- one with potentially superior financials -- then do not miss this free list of interesting companies, that have HIGH return on equity and low debt.
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If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at email@example.com. 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. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.