We've lost count of how many times insiders have accumulated shares in a company that goes on to improve markedly. 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 we'll take a look at whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in Centene Corporation (NYSE:CNC).
What Is Insider Selling?
Most investors know that it is quite permissible for company leaders, such as directors of the board, to buy and sell stock in the company. However, such insiders must disclose their trading activities, and not trade on inside information.
Insider transactions are not the most important thing when it comes to long-term investing. But equally, we would consider it foolish to ignore insider transactions altogether. For example, a Harvard University study found that 'insider purchases earn abnormal returns of more than 6% per year.'
Centene Insider Transactions Over The Last Year
Over the last year, we can see that the biggest insider purchase was by Director Jessica Blume for US$151k worth of shares, at about US$52.99 per share. That means that even when the share price was higher than US$45.40 (the recent price), an insider wanted to purchase shares. While their view may have changed since the purchase was made, this does at least suggest they have had confidence in the company's future. We always take careful note of the price insiders pay when purchasing shares. Generally speaking, it catches our eye when an insider has purchased shares at above current prices, as it suggests they believed the shares were worth buying, even at a higher price. Jessica Blume was the only individual insider to buy over the 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!
Centene is not the only stock insiders are buying. So take a peek at this free list of growing companies with insider buying.
Insider Ownership of Centene
I like to look at how many shares insiders own in a company, to help inform my view of how aligned they are with insiders. A high insider ownership often makes company leadership more mindful of shareholder interests. It's great to see that Centene insiders own 1.3% of the company, worth about US$248m. Most shareholders would be happy to see this sort of insider ownership, since it suggests that management incentives are well aligned with other shareholders.
What Might The Insider Transactions At Centene Tell Us?
It's certainly positive to see the recent insider purchase. And the longer term insider transactions also give us confidence. When combined with notable insider ownership, these factors suggest Centene insiders are well aligned, and quite possibly think the share price is too low. One for the watchlist, at least! 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.
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.
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 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.