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Great news for Axcella Health Inc. (NASDAQ:AXLA): Insiders acquired stock in large numbers last year

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When a single insider purchases stock, it is typically not a major deal. However, when multiple insiders purchase stock, like in Axcella Health Inc.'s (NASDAQ:AXLA) instance, it's good news for shareholders.

While we would never suggest that investors should base their decisions solely on what the directors of a company have been doing, logic dictates you should pay some attention to whether insiders are buying or selling shares.

View our latest analysis for Axcella Health

The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At Axcella Health

Over the last year, we can see that the biggest insider purchase was by Senior VP & CFO Robert Crane for US$75k worth of shares, at about US$1.91 per share. So it's clear an insider wanted to buy, at around the current price, which is US$2.03. Of course they may have changed their mind. But this suggests they are optimistic. We do always like to see insider buying, but it is worth noting if those purchases were made at well below today's share price, as the discount to value may have narrowed with the rising price. The good news for Axcella Health share holders is that insiders were buying at near the current price.

Happily, we note that in the last year insiders paid US$170k for 89.01k shares. On the other hand they divested 1.14k shares, for US$2.2k. In total, Axcella Health insiders bought more than they sold over the last year. The chart below shows insider transactions (by companies and individuals) over the last year. If you want to know exactly who sold, for how much, and when, simply click on the graph below!

insider-trading-volume
insider-trading-volume

There are always plenty of stocks that insiders are buying. So if that suits your style you could check each stock one by one or you could take a look at this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).

Are Axcella Health Insiders Buying Or Selling?

In the last three months company Senior VP & Chief Medical Officer Margaret Koziel divested US$1.2k worth of stock. That is not a lot. Looking at the net result, we don't think this recent trading sheds much light on how insiders, as a group, are feeling about the company's prospects.

Insider Ownership of Axcella Health

Many investors like to check how much of a company is owned by 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. Our information indicates that Axcella Health insiders own about US$839k worth of shares. It's always possible we are missing something but from our data, it looks like insider ownership is minimal.

What Might The Insider Transactions At Axcella Health Tell Us?

While there has not been any insider buying in the last three months, there has been selling. But given the selling was modest, we're not worried. However, our analysis of transactions over the last year is heartening. While we have no worries about the insider transactions, we'd be more comfortable if they owned more Axcella Health stock. In addition to knowing about insider transactions going on, it's beneficial to identify the risks facing Axcella Health. To that end, you should learn about the 6 warning signs we've spotted with Axcella Health (including 3 which are a bit unpleasant).

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.

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.