Anyone interested in Southern First Bancshares, Inc. (NASDAQ:SFST) should probably be aware that the Executive VP, Michael Dowling, recently divested US$135k worth of shares in the company, at an average price of US$45.01 each. However, the silver lining is that the sale only reduced their total holding by 6.9%, so we're hesitant to read anything much into it, on its own.
Southern First Bancshares Insider Transactions Over The Last Year
Notably, that recent sale by Michael Dowling is the biggest insider sale of Southern First Bancshares shares that we've seen in the last year. So it's clear an insider wanted to take some cash off the table, even below the current price of US$46.00. We generally consider it a negative if insiders have been selling, especially if they did so below the current price, because it implies that they considered a lower price to be reasonable. While insider selling is not a positive sign, we can't be sure if it does mean insiders think the shares are fully valued, so it's only a weak sign. It is worth noting that this sale was only 6.9% of Michael Dowling's holding.
Over the last year we saw more insider selling of Southern First Bancshares shares, than buying. 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!
I will like Southern First Bancshares better if I see some big insider buys. While we wait, check out this free list of growing companies with considerable, recent, insider buying.
Does Southern First Bancshares Boast High Insider Ownership?
For a common shareholder, it is worth checking how many shares are held by company insiders. A high insider ownership often makes company leadership more mindful of shareholder interests. Southern First Bancshares insiders own about US$24m worth of shares. That equates to 6.8% of the company. This level of insider ownership is good but just short of being particularly stand-out. It certainly does suggest a reasonable degree of alignment.
So What Do The Southern First Bancshares Insider Transactions Indicate?
Insiders sold stock recently, but they haven't been buying. Zooming out, the longer term picture doesn't give us much comfort. While insiders do own shares, they don't own a heap, and they have been selling. We're in no rush to buy! In addition to knowing about insider transactions going on, it's beneficial to identify the risks facing Southern First Bancshares. At Simply Wall St, we found 3 warning signs for Southern First Bancshares that deserve your attention before buying any shares.
Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a peek at this free list of interesting 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.
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