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Have Insiders Been Selling IRESS Limited (ASX:IRE) 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 we'll take a look at whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in IRESS Limited (ASX:IRE).

Do Insider Transactions Matter?

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, most countries require that the company discloses such transactions to the market.

We would never suggest that investors should base their decisions solely on what the directors of a company have been doing. But logic dictates you should pay some attention to whether insiders are buying or selling shares. 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 IRESS

IRESS Insider Transactions Over The Last Year

Over the last year, we can see that the biggest insider sale was by the MD, CEO & Director, Andrew Walsh, for AU$1.9m worth of shares, at about AU$12.00 per share. So what is clear is that an insider saw fit to sell at around the current price of AU$11.79. While insider selling is a negative, to us, it is more negative if the shares are sold at a lower price. We note that this sale took place at around the current price, so it isn't a major concern, though it's hardly a good sign. Andrew Walsh was the only individual insider to sell shares in the last twelve months.

Andrew Walsh divested 275k shares over the last 12 months at an average price of AU$12.59. 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!

ASX:IRE Recent Insider Trading, September 16th 2019

I will like IRESS better if I see some big insider buys. While we wait, check out this free list of growing companies with considerable, recent, insider buying.

Does IRESS Boast High Insider Ownership?

Looking at the total insider shareholdings in a company can help to inform your view of whether they are well aligned with common shareholders. Usually, the higher the insider ownership, the more likely it is that insiders will be incentivised to build the company for the long term. Based on our data, IRESS insiders have about 0.4% of the stock, worth approximately AU$7.2m. We consider this fairly low insider ownership.

What Might The Insider Transactions At IRESS Tell Us?

The fact that there have been no IRESS insider transactions recently certainly doesn't bother us. We don't take much encouragement from the transactions by IRESS insiders. And usually insiders own more stock in the company, according to our data. If you are like me, you may want to think about whether this company will grow or shrink. Luckily, you can check this free report showing analyst forecasts for its future.

If you would prefer to check out another company -- one with potentially superior financials -- then do not miss this free list of interesting companies, that have HIGH return on equity 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.

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.