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Have Insiders Been Buying Berkeley Lights, Inc. (NASDAQ:BLI) Shares?

Simply Wall St
·3 mins read

It is not uncommon to see companies perform well in the years after insiders buy shares. The flip side of that is that there are more than a few examples of insiders dumping stock prior to a period of weak performance. So before you buy or sell Berkeley Lights, Inc. (NASDAQ:BLI), 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, such insiders must disclose their trading activities, and not trade on inside information.

We would never suggest that investors should base their decisions solely on what the directors of a company have been doing. But it is perfectly logical to keep tabs on what insiders are doing. For example, a Columbia University study found that 'insiders are more likely to engage in open market purchases of their own company’s stock when the firm is about to reveal new agreements with customers and suppliers'.

See our latest analysis for Berkeley Lights

Berkeley Lights Insider Transactions Over The Last Year

The Independent Director Gregory Lucier made the biggest insider purchase in the last 12 months. That single transaction was for US$500k worth of shares at a price of US$22.00 each. We do like to see buying, but this purchase was made at well below the current price of US$75.11. While it does suggest insiders consider the stock undervalued at lower prices, this transaction doesn't tell us much about what they think of current prices.

The chart below shows insider transactions (by companies and 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!

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).

Insider Ownership

For a common shareholder, it is worth checking how many shares are held by company insiders. We usually like to see fairly high levels of insider ownership. It's great to see that Berkeley Lights insiders own 2.3% of the company, worth about US$110m. I like to see this level of insider ownership, because it increases the chances that management are thinking about the best interests of shareholders.

So What Do The Berkeley Lights Insider Transactions Indicate?

There haven't been any insider transactions in the last three months -- that doesn't mean much. On a brighter note, the transactions over the last year are encouraging. Judging from their transactions, and high insider ownership, Berkeley Lights insiders feel good about the company's future. So these insider transactions can help us build a thesis about the stock, but it's also worthwhile knowing the risks facing this company. When we did our research, we found 3 warning signs for Berkeley Lights (1 can't be ignored!) that we believe deserve your full attention.

But note: Berkeley Lights 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.

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. 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.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team@simplywallst.com.