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Need To Know: Safety Insurance Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:SAFT) Insiders Have Been Selling Shares

Cole Patterson

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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 before you buy or sell Safety Insurance Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:SAFT), you may well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling.

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, rules govern insider transactions, and certain disclosures are required.

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 Harvard University study found that ‘insider purchases earn abnormal returns of more than 6% per year.’

Check out our latest analysis for Safety Insurance Group

Safety Insurance Group Insider Transactions Over The Last Year

Over the last year, we can see that the biggest insider sale was by Vice President of Underwriting James Berry for US$503k worth of shares, at about US$98.02 per share. That means that an insider was selling shares at around the current price of US$93.31. They could have a variety of motivations for selling, but it’s still not particularly encouraging to see. Arguably, insider selling at around current prices should give us reason to reflect on whether the stock is fully valued at the moment.

In the last twelve months insiders netted US$1.4m for 15.13k shares sold. All up, insiders sold more shares in Safety Insurance Group than they bought, over the last year. They sold for an average price of about US$94.45. We don’t gain much confidence from insider selling near the recent share price. While some insiders have decided to take some money off the table, we wouldn’t put too much weight on this fact. The chart below shows insider transactions (by individuals) over the last year. If you click on the chart, you can see all the individual transactions, including the share price, individual, and the date!

NasdaqGS:SAFT Recent Insider Trading, February 21st 2019

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

Insider Ownership

For a common shareholder, it is worth checking how many shares are held by company insiders. We usually like to see fairly high levels of insider ownership. It appears that Safety Insurance Group insiders own 4.8% of the company, worth about US$68m. This level of insider ownership is good but just short of being particularly stand-out. It certainly does suggest a reasonable degree of alignment.

What Might The Insider Transactions At Safety Insurance Group Tell Us?

The fact that there have been no Safety Insurance Group insider transactions recently certainly doesn’t bother us. Our analysis of Safety Insurance Group insider transactions leaves us cautious. But we do like the fact that insiders own a fair chunk of the company. Along with insider transactions, I recommend checking if Safety Insurance Group is growing revenue. This free chart of historic revenue and earnings should make that easy.

But note: Safety Insurance Group may not be the best stock to buy. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies with high ROE and low debt.

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.