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Did American Tower Corporation (REIT) (NYSE:AMT) Insiders Sell Shares?

Liliana Gabriel

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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 we’ll take a look at whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in American Tower Corporation (REIT) (NYSE:AMT).

Do Insider Transactions Matter?

Most investors know that it is quite permissible for company leaders, such as directors of the board, to buy and sell stock on the market. 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.’

View our latest analysis for American Tower (REIT)

The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At American Tower (REIT)

In the last twelve months, the biggest single sale by an insider was when William Hess sold US$4.1m worth of shares at a price of US$145 per share. That means that an insider was selling shares at slightly below the current price (US$173). While sellers have a variety of reasons for selling, this isn’t particularly great to see. When an insider sells below the current price, it does tend to make us wonder about the current valuation. We note that the biggest single sale was only 37.3% of William Hess’s holding.

Over the last year, we note insiders sold 30.43k shares worth US$4.4m. In total, American Tower (REIT) insiders sold more than they bought over the last year. They sold for an average price of about US$146. We don’t gain much confidence from insider selling near the recent share price. While some insiders have decided to take some money off the table, we wouldn’t put too much weight on this fact. The chart below shows insider transactions (by individuals) over the last year. By clicking on the graph below, you can see the precise details of each insider transaction!

NYSE:AMT Insider Trading February 12th 19

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Insiders at American Tower (REIT) Have Sold Stock Recently

Over the last three months, we’ve seen significant insider selling at American Tower (REIT). In total, Director David Sharbutt dumped US$131k worth of shares in that time, and we didn’t record any purchases whatsoever. This may suggest that some insiders think that the shares are not cheap.

Insider Ownership of American Tower (REIT)

Many investors like to check how much of a company is owned by insiders. A high insider ownership often makes company leadership more mindful of shareholder interests. American Tower (REIT) insiders own about US$149m worth of shares (which is 0.2% of the company). This kind of significant ownership by insiders does generally increase the chance that the company is run in the interest of all shareholders.

What Might The Insider Transactions At American Tower (REIT) Tell Us?

An insider hasn’t bought American Tower (REIT) stock in the last three months, but there was some selling. And even if we look to the last year, we didn’t see any purchases. But it is good to see that American Tower (REIT) is growing earnings. While insiders do own a lot of shares in the company (which is good), our analysis of their transactions doesn’t make us feel confident about the company. Of course, the future is what matters most. So if you are interested in American Tower (REIT), you should check out this free report on analyst forecasts for the company.

Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies.

To help readers see past the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements.

The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com.