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 Roper Technologies, Inc. (NYSE:ROP), you may well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling.
What Is Insider Buying?
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.
Insider transactions are not the most important thing when it comes to long-term investing. But it is perfectly logical to keep tabs on what insiders are doing. As Peter Lynch said, 'insiders might sell their shares for any number of reasons, but they buy them for only one: they think the price will rise'.
The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At Roper Technologies
The Independent Director, John Fort, made the biggest insider sale in the last 12 months. That single transaction was for US$1.7m worth of shares at a price of US$372 each. That means that even when the share price was below the current price of US$420, 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. However, while insider selling is sometimes discouraging, it's only a weak signal. We note that the biggest single sale was only 25% of John Fort's holding.
Roper Technologies insiders didn't buy any shares over the last year. You can see a visual depiction of insider transactions (by companies and individuals) over the last 12 months, below. If you click on the chart, you can see all the individual transactions, including the share price, individual, and the date!
I will like Roper Technologies better if I see some big insider buys. While we wait, check out this free list of growing companies with considerable, recent, insider buying.
Another way to test the alignment between the leaders of a company and other shareholders is to look at how many shares they own. Usually, the higher the insider ownership, the more likely it is that insiders will be incentivised to build the company for the long term. It's great to see that Roper Technologies insiders own 0.4% of the company, worth about US$191m. I like to see this level of insider ownership, because it increases the chances that management are thinking about the best interests of shareholders.
So What Does This Data Suggest About Roper Technologies Insiders?
There haven't been any insider transactions in the last three months -- that doesn't mean much. It's heartening that insiders own plenty of stock, but we'd like to see more insider buying, since the last year of Roper Technologies insider transactions don't fill us with confidence. In addition to knowing about insider transactions going on, it's beneficial to identify the risks facing Roper Technologies. To help with this, we've discovered 2 warning signs (1 can't be ignored!) that you ought to be aware of before buying any shares in Roper Technologies.
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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