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Are Insiders Pessimistic About American Woodmark Corporation (NASDAQ:AMWD) Stock?

Ingrid Hart

American Woodmark Corporation manufactures and distributes kitchen, bath, and home organization products for the remodeling and new home construction markets in the United States. American Woodmark’s insiders have divested from 900.00 shares in the large-cap stock within the past three months. A well-known argument is that insiders divesting from their own companies’ shares sends a pessimistic signal. A research published in The MIT Press (1998) concluded that stocks following insider selling fell 2.7% compared to the market. But these signals may not be sufficient to gain confidence on whether to divest. I will be analysing whether these selling activities are supported by favourable future outlook and recent share price volatility.

Check out our latest analysis for American Woodmark

Who Are Selling Their Shares?

NasdaqGS:AMWD Insider Trading September 4th 18

There were more American Woodmark insiders that have sold shares than those that have bought. In total, individual insiders own less than one million shares in the business, or around 0.84% of total shares outstanding. The insider that recently sold more shares is Andrew Cogan (board member) .

Is Future Growth Outlook As Bearish?

NasdaqGS:AMWD Future Profit September 4th 18

At a very high level, American Woodmark’s future looks positive. Delving deeper into the line items, American Woodmark is believed to experience a double-digit top-line growth over the next year, which is expected to drive significant expected earnings growth as well. This may mean the company is reaping meaningful benefits from past growth initiatives, placing it in a beneficial position for future profits. Insider net selling activity is counter to what we’d expect given a significantly positive earnings outlook, indicating they may know something the market does not. Insiders could perceive the high growth as unsustainable or that it has been excessively factored into the current share price.

Did Insiders Sell On Share Price Volatility?

An alternative reason for recent trades could be insiders taking advantage of the share price volatility. Volatility provides an opportunity to trade on market inefficiencies when the stock is under-priced compared to the stock’s intrinsic value. In the past three months, American Woodmark’s share price reached a high of $104.1 and a low of $81.45. This suggests moderate volatility with a share price movement of 27.81%. This may not be large enough to warrant any significant divesting, therefore the underlying driver may be the insiders’ belief of company growth prospects or simply their personal portfolio diversification needs.

Next Steps:

American Woodmark’s insiders’ meaningful divestments tells us that their shares have recently fallen out of favour, although the positive expected earnings growth challenges this assumption, and the relatively stable stock price may not warrant exploiting any mispricing. But we must also be aware that insiders divesting may not actually be based their views on the company’s outlook. Furthermore, while insider transactions could be a helpful signal, it is definitely not sufficient on its own to make an investment decision. I’ve put together two fundamental factors you should look at:

  1. Financial Health: Does American Woodmark have a healthy balance sheet? Take a look at our free balance sheet analysis with six simple checks on key factors like leverage and risk.
  2. Other High Quality Alternatives : Are there other high quality stocks you could be holding instead of American Woodmark? Explore our interactive list of high quality stocks to get an idea of what else is out there you may be missing!

NB: Figures in this article are calculated using data from the last twelve months, which refer to the 12-month period ending on the last date of the month the financial statement is dated. This may not be consistent with full year annual report figures.

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.