Who Has Been Selling OneSpan Inc. (NASDAQ:OSPN) Shares?

We often see insiders buying up shares in companies that perform well over the long term. 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 shareholders might well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in OneSpan Inc. (NASDAQ:OSPN).

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, such insiders must disclose their trading activities, and not trade on inside information.

We would never suggest that investors should base their decisions solely on what the directors of a company have been doing. But equally, we would consider it foolish to ignore insider transactions altogether. For example, a Columbia University study found that ‘insiders are more likely to engage in open market purchases of their own company‚Äôs stock when the firm is about to reveal new agreements with customers and suppliers’.

View our latest analysis for OneSpan

OneSpan Insider Transactions Over The Last Year

The Founder & Director, Thomas Hunt, made the biggest insider sale in the last 12 months. That single transaction was for US$7.5m worth of shares at a price of US$17.65 each. While we don’t usually like to see insider selling, it’s more concerning if the sales take place at a lower price. It’s of some comfort that this sale was conducted at a price well above the current share price, which is US$13.51. So it may not shed much light on insider confidence at current levels. Thomas Hunt was the only individual insider to sell over the last year.

In the last twelve months insiders purchased 20390 shares for US$294k. On the other hand they divested 715k shares, for US$12m. Thomas Hunt ditched 715k shares over the year. The average price per share was US$17.24. You can see the insider transactions (by 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!

NasdaqCM:OSPN Recent Insider Trading, August 20th 2019
NasdaqCM:OSPN Recent Insider Trading, August 20th 2019

Insiders at OneSpan Have Sold Stock Recently

We’ve seen more insider selling than insider buying at OneSpan recently. We note Thomas Hunt cashed in US$1.4m worth of shares. On the flip side, insiders spent US$294k on purchasing shares (as mentioned above). Since the selling really does outweigh the buying, we’d say that these transactions may suggest that some insiders feel the shares are not cheap.

Insider Ownership of OneSpan

Looking at the total insider shareholdings in a company can help to inform your view of whether they are well aligned with common shareholders. We usually like to see fairly high levels of insider ownership. OneSpan insiders own about US$105m worth of shares (which is 19% of the company). Most shareholders would be happy to see this sort of insider ownership, since it suggests that management incentives are well aligned with other shareholders.

So What Does This Data Suggest About OneSpan Insiders?

The stark truth for OneSpan is that there has been more insider selling than insider buying in the last three months. Zooming out, the longer term picture doesn’t give us much comfort. It is good to see high insider ownership, but the insider selling leaves us cautious. Therefore, you should should definitely take a look at this FREE report showing analyst forecasts for OneSpan.

But note: OneSpan 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.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.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.