We've lost count of how many times insiders have accumulated shares in a company that goes on to improve markedly. 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 shareholders might well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in Checkmate Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:CMPI).
What Is Insider Buying?
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, rules govern insider transactions, and certain disclosures are required.
We would never suggest that investors should base their decisions solely on what the directors of a company have been doing. 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'.
The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At Checkmate Pharmaceuticals
Over the last year, we can see that the biggest insider purchase was by Founder Arthur Krieg for US$174k worth of shares, at about US$6.97 per share. That means that even when the share price was higher than US$5.16 (the recent price), an insider wanted to purchase shares. Their view may have changed since then, but at least it shows they felt optimistic at the time. To us, it's very important to consider the price insiders pay for shares. As a general rule, we feel more positive about a stock when an insider has bought shares at above current prices, because that suggests they viewed the stock as good value, even at a higher price. The only individual insider to buy over the last year was Arthur Krieg.
Arthur Krieg purchased 48.40k shares over the year. The average price per share was US$8.69. 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!
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).
Does Checkmate Pharmaceuticals 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. I reckon it's a good sign if insiders own a significant number of shares in the company. From looking at our data, insiders own US$4.4m worth of Checkmate Pharmaceuticals stock, about 3.9% of the company. I generally like to see higher levels of ownership.
What Might The Insider Transactions At Checkmate Pharmaceuticals Tell Us?
It's certainly positive to see the recent insider purchase. And the longer term insider transactions also give us confidence. But we don't feel the same about the fact the company is making losses. While the overall levels of insider ownership are below what we'd like to see, the history of transactions imply that Checkmate Pharmaceuticals insiders are reasonably well aligned, and optimistic for the future. So while it's helpful to know what insiders are doing in terms of buying or selling, it's also helpful to know the risks that a particular company is facing. When we did our research, we found 3 warning signs for Checkmate Pharmaceuticals (1 makes us a bit uncomfortable!) that we believe deserve your full attention.
Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies.
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.
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