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Are Insiders Selling Raymond James Financial, Inc. (NYSE:RJF) Stock?

Simply Wall St

We've lost count of how many times insiders have accumulated shares in a company that goes on to improve markedly. On the other hand, we'd be remiss not to mention that insider sales have been known to precede tough periods for a business. So shareholders might well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in Raymond James Financial, Inc. (NYSE:RJF).

What Is Insider Buying?

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.

Insider transactions are not the most important thing when it comes to long-term investing. But equally, we would consider it foolish to ignore insider transactions altogether. As Peter Lynch said, 'insiders might sell their shares for any number of reasons, but they buy them for only one: they think the price will rise.'

View our latest analysis for Raymond James Financial

Raymond James Financial Insider Transactions Over The Last Year

In the last twelve months, the biggest single sale by an insider was when the Chairman & CEO , Paul Reilly, sold US$5.5m worth of shares at a price of US$91.35 per share. That means that an insider was selling shares at around the current price of US$84.82. We generally don't like to see insider selling, but the lower the sale price, the more it concerns us. 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.

Happily, we note that in the last year insiders paid US$3.2m for 74678 shares. On the other hand they divested 192k shares, for US$14m. In total, Raymond James Financial insiders sold more than they bought over the last year. The average sell price was around US$71.63. We don't gain confidence from insider selling below the recent share price. But we wouldn't put too much weight on the insider selling. You can see the insider transactions (by individuals) over the last year depicted in the chart below. If you click on the chart, you can see all the individual transactions, including the share price, individual, and the date!

NYSE:RJF Recent Insider Trading, July 22nd 2019

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

Insiders at Raymond James Financial Have Sold Stock Recently

There was substantially more insider selling, than buying, of Raymond James Financial shares over the last three months. In total, insiders sold US$9.9m worth of shares in that time. On the other hand we note insiders bought US$151k worth of shares. Since the selling really does outweigh the buying, we'd say that these transactions may suggest that some insiders feel the shares are not cheap.

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. It's great to see that Raymond James Financial insiders own 11% of the company, worth about US$1.3b. Most shareholders would be happy to see this sort of insider ownership, since it suggests that management incentives are well aligned with other shareholders.

So What Does This Data Suggest About Raymond James Financial Insiders?

The stark truth for Raymond James Financial is that there has been more insider selling than insider buying in the last three months. And our longer term analysis of insider transactions didn't bring confidence, either. On the plus side, Raymond James Financial makes money, and is growing profits. The company boasts high insider ownership, but we're a little hesitant, given the history of share sales. 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 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.