It is not uncommon to see companies perform well in the years after insiders buy shares. 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 shareholders might well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in AMERCO (NASDAQ:UHAL).
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, rules govern insider transactions, and certain disclosures are required.
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. 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 AMERCO
In the last twelve months, the biggest single sale by an insider was when the General Counsel, Laurence De Respino, sold US$60k worth of shares at a price of US$603 per share. So we know that an insider sold shares at around the present share price of US$551. We generally don't like to see insider selling, but the lower the sale price, the more it concerns us. In this case, the big sale took place at around the current price, so it's not too bad (but it's still not a positive). The only individual insider seller over the last year was Laurence De Respino.
Laurence De Respino divested 175.00 shares over the last 12 months at an average price of US$584. 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!
If you are like me, then you will not want to miss this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying.
AMERCO Insiders Are Selling The Stock
The last three months saw some AMERCO insider selling. General Counsel Laurence De Respino sold just US$42k worth of shares in that time. Neither the lack of buying nor the presence of selling is heartening. But the volume sold is so low that it really doesn't bother us.
Insider Ownership of AMERCO
Another way to test the alignment between the leaders of a company and other shareholders is to look at how many shares they own. We usually like to see fairly high levels of insider ownership. It's great to see that AMERCO insiders own 6.8% of the company, worth about US$733m. 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 AMERCO Insiders?
Our data shows a little more insider selling, but no insider buying, in the last three months. But the sales were small, so we're not concerned. It's heartening that insiders own plenty of stock, but we'd like to see more insider buying, since the last year of AMERCO insider transactions don't fill us with confidence. 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. At Simply Wall St, we found 1 warning sign for AMERCO that deserve your attention before buying any shares.
But note: AMERCO 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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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.
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