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Have Insiders Been Selling CBIZ, Inc. (NYSE:CBZ) Shares?

Simply Wall St

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 CBIZ, Inc. (NYSE:CBZ).

Do Insider Transactions Matter?

It's quite normal to see company insiders, such as board members, trading in company stock, from time to time. However, rules govern insider transactions, and certain disclosures are required.

We don't think shareholders should simply follow insider transactions. But logic dictates you should pay some attention to whether insiders are buying or selling shares. For example, a Harvard University study found that 'insider purchases earn abnormal returns of more than 6% per year.'

View our latest analysis for CBIZ

CBIZ Insider Transactions Over The Last Year

In fact, the recent sale by Non-Executive Chairman Steven Gerard was not their only sale of CBIZ shares this year. They previously made an even bigger sale of -US$1.6m worth of shares at a price of US$23.10 per share. That means that even when the share price was slightly below the current price of US$23.56, an insider wanted to cash in some shares. When an insider sells below the current price, it suggests that they considered that lower price to be fair. That makes us wonder what they think of the (higher) recent valuation. However, while insider selling is sometimes discouraging, it's only a weak signal. This single sale was just 20.9% of Steven Gerard's stake.

We note that in the last year insiders divested 98172 shares for a total of US$2.2m. In the last year CBIZ insiders didn't buy any company stock. You can see a visual depiction of insider transactions (by individuals) over the last 12 months, below. If you click on the chart, you can see all the individual transactions, including the share price, individual, and the date!

NYSE:CBZ Recent Insider Trading, September 17th 2019

If you like to buy stocks that insiders are buying, rather than selling, then you might just love this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).

Insiders at CBIZ Have Sold Stock Recently

The last quarter saw substantial insider selling of CBIZ shares. Specifically, Steven Gerard ditched US$1.6m worth of shares in that time, and we didn't record any purchases whatsoever. Overall this makes us a bit cautious, but it's not the be all and end all.

Insider Ownership of CBIZ

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. We usually like to see fairly high levels of insider ownership. CBIZ insiders own about US$56m worth of shares. That equates to 4.4% of the company. We've certainly seen higher levels of insider ownership elsewhere, but these holdings are enough to suggest alignment between insiders and the other shareholders.

So What Does This Data Suggest About CBIZ Insiders?

An insider sold CBIZ shares recently, but they didn't buy any. Looking to the last twelve months, our data doesn't show any insider buying. But since CBIZ is profitable and growing, we're not too worried by this. While insiders do own shares, they don't own a heap, and they have been selling. We'd think twice before buying! Of course, the future is what matters most. So if you are interested in CBIZ, you should check out this free report on analyst forecasts for the company.

Of course CBIZ may not be the best stock to buy. So you may wish to see this free collection of high quality 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.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. 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. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.