We often see insiders buying up shares in companies that perform well over the long term. Unfortunately, there are also plenty of examples of share prices declining precipitously after insiders have sold shares. So before you buy or sell Melrose Industries PLC (LON:MRO), 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 it is perfectly logical to keep tabs on what insiders are doing. 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'.
Melrose Industries Insider Transactions Over The Last Year
In the last twelve months, the biggest single purchase by an insider was when Co- Founder & Executive Vice Chairman David Roper bought UK£992k worth of shares at a price of UK£1.83 per share. So it's clear an insider wanted to buy, even at a higher price than the current share price (being UK£1.70). It's very possible they regret the purchase, but it's more likely they are bullish about the company. We always take careful note of the price insiders pay when purchasing shares. It is generally more encouraging if they paid above the current price, as it suggests they saw value, even at higher levels.
While Melrose Industries insiders bought shares during the last year, they didn't sell. You can see the insider transactions (by companies and individuals) over the last year depicted in the chart below. If you click on the chart, you can see all the individual transactions, including the share price, individual, and the date!
There are plenty of other companies that have insiders buying up shares. You probably do not want to miss this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying.
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. Melrose Industries insiders own 1.3% of the company, currently worth about UK£105m based on the recent share price. Most shareholders would be happy to see this sort of insider ownership, since it suggests that management incentives are well aligned with other shareholders.
What Might The Insider Transactions At Melrose Industries Tell Us?
There haven't been any insider transactions in the last three months -- that doesn't mean much. However, our analysis of transactions over the last year is heartening. It would be great to see more insider buying, but overall it seems like Melrose Industries insiders are reasonably well aligned (owning significant chunk of the company's shares) and optimistic for the future. While we like knowing what's going on with the insider's ownership and transactions, we make sure to also consider what risks are facing a stock before making any investment decision. At Simply Wall St, we found 1 warning sign for Melrose Industries that deserve your attention before buying any shares.
Of course Melrose Industries 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.
If you decide to trade Melrose Industries, use the lowest-cost* platform that is rated #1 Overall by Barron’s, Interactive Brokers. Trade stocks, options, futures, forex, bonds and funds on 135 markets, all from a single integrated account.
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.
*Interactive Brokers Rated Lowest Cost Broker by StockBrokers.com Annual Online Review 2020
Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.