We've lost count of how many times insiders have accumulated shares in a company that goes on to improve markedly. The flip side of that is that there are more than a few examples of insiders dumping stock prior to a period of weak performance. So before you buy or sell Direct Line Insurance Group plc (LON:DLG), you may well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling.
Do Insider Transactions Matter?
It's quite normal to see company insiders, such as board members, trading in company stock, from time to time. However, such insiders must disclose their trading activities, and not trade on inside information.
Insider transactions are not the most important thing when it comes to long-term investing. But logic dictates you should pay some attention to whether insiders are buying or selling shares. 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'.
Direct Line Insurance Group Insider Transactions Over The Last Year
Over the last year, we can see that the biggest insider sale was by the Chief Operating Officer, Steven Maddock, for UK£484k worth of shares, at about UK£2.91 per share. That means that even when the share price was below the current price of UK£3.32, an insider wanted to cash in some shares. When an insider sells below the current price, it suggests that they considered that lower price to be fair. That makes us wonder what they think of the (higher) recent valuation. Please do note, however, that sellers may have a variety of reasons for selling, so we don't know for sure what they think of the stock price. It is worth noting that this sale was 90% of Steven Maddock's holding.
In the last year Direct Line Insurance Group insiders didn't buy any company stock. You can see the insider transactions (by companies and individuals) over the last year depicted in the chart below. By clicking on the graph below, you can see the precise details of each insider transaction!
If you like to buy stocks that insiders are buying, rather than selling, then you might just love this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).
I like to look at how many shares insiders own in a company, to help inform my view of how aligned they are with 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. From looking at our data, insiders own UK£3.6m worth of Direct Line Insurance Group stock, about 0.08% of the company. I generally like to see higher levels of ownership.
So What Does This Data Suggest About Direct Line Insurance Group Insiders?
It doesn't really mean much that no insider has traded Direct Line Insurance Group shares in the last quarter. Our analysis of Direct Line Insurance Group insider transactions leaves us unenthusiastic. And we're not picking up on high enough insider ownership to give us any comfort. 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. You'd be interested to know, that we found 1 warning sign for Direct Line Insurance Group and we suggest you have a look.
But note: Direct Line Insurance Group may not be the best stock to buy. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies with high ROE and low debt.
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.
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