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 shareholders might well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in Quotient Limited (NASDAQ:QTNT).
Do Insider Transactions Matter?
It is perfectly legal for company insiders, including board members, to buy and sell stock in a company. However, most countries require that the company discloses such transactions to the market.
We would never suggest that investors should base their decisions solely on what the directors of a company have been doing. 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'.
The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At Quotient
The Independent Chairman of the Board Heino von Prondzynski made the biggest insider purchase in the last 12 months. That single transaction was for US$120k worth of shares at a price of US$4.00 each. That implies that an insider found the current price of US$4.40 per share to be enticing. That means they have been optimistic about the company in the past, though they may have changed their mind. We do always like to see insider buying, but it is worth noting if those purchases were made at well below today's share price, as the discount to value may have narrowed with the rising price. Happily, the Quotient insiders decided to buy shares at close to current prices.
Quotient insiders may have bought shares in the last year, but they didn't sell any. You can see the insider transactions (by companies and 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!
There are always plenty of stocks that insiders are buying. So if that suits your style you could check each stock one by one or you could take a look at this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).
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. From our data, it seems that Quotient insiders own 1.8% of the company, worth about US$7.9m. Overall, this level of ownership isn't that impressive, but it's certainly better than nothing!
So What Does This Data Suggest About Quotient Insiders?
There haven't been any insider transactions in the last three months -- that doesn't mean much. But insiders have shown more of an appetite for the stock, over the last year. We'd like to see bigger individual holdings. However, we don't see anything to make us think Quotient insiders are doubting the company. 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. For instance, we've identified 4 warning signs for Quotient (2 shouldn't be ignored) you should be aware of.
If you would prefer to check out another company -- one with potentially superior financials -- then do not miss this free list of interesting companies, that have HIGH return on equity 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.
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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