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Have Commerce Bancshares, Inc. (NASDAQ:CBSH) Insiders Been Selling Their Stock?

Simply Wall St

We wouldn't blame Commerce Bancshares, Inc. (NASDAQ:CBSH) shareholders if they were a little worried about the fact that John Kemper, the President recently netted about US$645k selling shares at an average price of US$64.24. However, it's crucial to note that they remain very much invested in the stock and that sale only reduced their holding by 6.6%.

View our latest analysis for Commerce Bancshares

The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At Commerce Bancshares

The Executive Chairman, David Kemper, made the biggest insider sale in the last 12 months. That single transaction was for US$1.7m worth of shares at a price of US$60.12 each. That means that even when the share price was below the current price of US$64.24, an insider wanted to cash in some shares. As a general rule we consider it to be discouraging when insiders are selling below the current price, because it suggests they were happy with a lower valuation. Please do note, however, that sellers may have a variety of reasons for selling, so we don't know for sure what they think of the stock price. We note that the biggest single sale was only 1.9% of David Kemper's holding.

In the last twelve months insiders netted US$7.7m for 126344 shares sold. In the last year Commerce Bancshares insiders didn't buy any company stock. The chart below shows insider transactions (by individuals) over the last year. If you click on the chart, you can see all the individual transactions, including the share price, individual, and the date!

NasdaqGS:CBSH Recent Insider Trading, October 27th 2019

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Does Commerce Bancshares Boast High Insider Ownership?

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. Usually, the higher the insider ownership, the more likely it is that insiders will be incentivised to build the company for the long term. Commerce Bancshares insiders own about US$239m worth of shares (which is 3.5% of the company). 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 Commerce Bancshares Tell Us?

Insiders sold stock recently, but they haven't been buying. Looking to the last twelve months, our data doesn't show any insider buying. But it is good to see that Commerce Bancshares is growing earnings. It is good to see high insider ownership, but the insider selling leaves us cautious. Of course, the future is what matters most. So if you are interested in Commerce Bancshares, you should check out this free report on analyst forecasts for the company.

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 editorial-team@simplywallst.com. 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.