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With Applied Materials, Inc.'s (NASDAQ:AMAT)) price down 6.8% this week, insiders might find some solace having sold US$48m worth of shares earlier this year.

Over the past year, insiders sold US$48m worth of Applied Materials, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMAT) stock at an average price of US$148 per share allowing them to get the most out of their money. The company’s market cap plunged by US$5.7b after price dropped by 6.8% last week but insiders were able to limit their loss to an extent.

While we would never suggest that investors should base their decisions solely on what the directors of a company have been doing, we would consider it foolish to ignore insider transactions altogether.

See our latest analysis for Applied Materials

The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At Applied Materials

The President, Gary Dickerson, made the biggest insider sale in the last 12 months. That single transaction was for US$43m worth of shares at a price of US$154 each. We generally don't like to see insider selling, but the lower the sale price, the more it concerns us. The silver lining is that this sell-down took place above the latest price (US$89.72). So it may not tell us anything about how insiders feel about the current share price.

In the last year Applied Materials insiders didn't buy any company stock. 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!

insider-trading-volume
insider-trading-volume

For those who like to find winning investments this free list of growing companies with recent insider purchasing, could be just the ticket.

Applied Materials Insiders Are Selling The Stock

Over the last three months, we've seen significant insider selling at Applied Materials. In total, insiders sold US$2.2m worth of shares in that time, and we didn't record any purchases whatsoever. In light of this it's hard to argue that all the insiders think that the shares are a bargain.

Does Applied Materials Boast High Insider Ownership?

Looking at the total insider shareholdings in a company can help to inform your view of whether they are well aligned with common shareholders. Usually, the higher the insider ownership, the more likely it is that insiders will be incentivised to build the company for the long term. Applied Materials insiders own 0.3% of the company, currently worth about US$240m based on the recent share price. 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 Applied Materials Insiders?

Insiders sold stock recently, but they haven't been buying. And there weren't any purchases to give us comfort, over the last year. On the plus side, Applied Materials makes money, and is growing profits. It is good to see high insider ownership, but the insider selling leaves us cautious. While we like knowing what's going on with the insider's ownership and transactions, we make sure to also consider what risks are facing a stock before making any investment decision. While conducting our analysis, we found that Applied Materials has 1 warning sign and it would be unwise to ignore this.

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.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. 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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