We've lost count of how many times insiders have accumulated shares in a company that goes on to improve markedly. Unfortunately, there are also plenty of examples of share prices declining precipitously after insiders have sold shares. So before you buy or sell BankUnited, Inc. (NYSE:BKU), you may well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling.
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 don't think shareholders should simply follow insider transactions. But logic dictates you should pay some attention to whether insiders are buying or selling shares. For example, a Harvard University study found that 'insider purchases earn abnormal returns of more than 6% per year.
BankUnited Insider Transactions Over The Last Year
Over the last year, we can see that the biggest insider sale was by the insider, Jay Richards, for US$61k worth of shares, at about US$34.45 per share. That means that even when the share price was slightly below the current price of US$34.80, 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. While insider selling is not a positive sign, we can't be sure if it does mean insiders think the shares are fully valued, so it's only a weak sign. This single sale was just 11% of Jay Richards's stake. Jay Richards was the only individual insider to sell over the last year.
You can see the insider transactions (by individuals) over the last year depicted in the chart below. If you want to know exactly who sold, for how much, and when, simply click on the graph below!
For those who like to find winning investments this free list of growing companies with recent insider purchasing, could be just the ticket.
Does BankUnited Boast High Insider Ownership?
Many investors like to check how much of a company is owned by insiders. I reckon it's a good sign if insiders own a significant number of shares in the company. BankUnited insiders own about US$23m worth of shares. That equates to 0.7% of the company. We've certainly seen higher levels of insider ownership elsewhere, but these holdings are enough to suggest alignment between insiders and the other shareholders.
So What Do The BankUnited Insider Transactions Indicate?
There haven't been any insider transactions in the last three months -- that doesn't mean much. We don't take much encouragement from the transactions by BankUnited insiders. But we do like the fact that insiders own a fair chunk of the company. If you are like me, you may want to think about whether this company will grow or shrink. Luckily, you can check this free report showing analyst forecasts for its future.
But note: BankUnited 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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If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.