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Have Insiders Been Selling First Bancorp (NASDAQ:FBNC) Shares?

Simply Wall St

We often see insiders buying up shares in companies that perform well over the long term. 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 First Bancorp (NASDAQ:FBNC).

What Is Insider Selling?

It's quite normal to see company insiders, such as board members, trading in company stock, from time to time. However, such insiders must disclose their trading activities, and not trade on inside information.

We don't think shareholders should simply follow insider transactions. But equally, we would consider it foolish to ignore insider transactions altogether. 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'.

Check out our latest analysis for First Bancorp

First Bancorp Insider Transactions Over The Last Year

Over the last year, we can see that the biggest insider purchase was by CEO & Director Richard Moore for US$100k worth of shares, at about US$31.35 per share. So it's clear an insider wanted to buy, at around the current price, which is US$35.93. Of course they may have changed their mind. But this suggests they are optimistic. While we always like to see insider buying, it's less meaningful if the purchases were made at much lower prices, as the opportunity they saw may have passed. The good news for First Bancorp share holders is that an insider was buying at near the current price. Richard Moore was the only individual insider to buy over the year.

Mary Capel ditched 2900 shares over the year. The average price per share was US$36.01. You can see a visual depiction of insider transactions (by individuals) over the last 12 months, below. If you want to know exactly who sold, for how much, and when, simply click on the graph below!

NasdaqGS:FBNC Recent Insider Trading, September 25th 2019

If you are like me, then you will not want to miss this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying.

First Bancorp Insiders Are Selling The Stock

Over the last three months, we've seen a bit of insider selling at First Bancorp. Director Mary Capel divested only US$33k worth of shares in that time. It's not great to see insider selling, nor the lack of recent buyers. But the amount sold isn't enough for us to put any weight on it.

Does First Bancorp Boast High Insider Ownership?

For a common shareholder, it is worth checking how many shares are held by company 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. First Bancorp insiders own about US$27m worth of shares. That equates to 2.5% of the company. While this is a strong but not outstanding level of insider ownership, it's enough to indicate some alignment between management and smaller shareholders.

What Might The Insider Transactions At First Bancorp Tell Us?

Our data shows a little more insider selling, but no insider buying, in the last three months. But the sales were small, so we're not concerned. Recent insider selling makes us a little nervous, in light of the broader picture of First Bancorp insider transactions. But it's good to see that insiders own shares in the company. Therefore, you should should definitely take a look at this FREE report showing analyst forecasts for First Bancorp.

Of course First Bancorp 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.