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Need To Know: Spirax-Sarco Engineering plc (LON:SPX) Insiders Have Been Buying 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. 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 we'll take a look at whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in Spirax-Sarco Engineering plc (LON:SPX).

What Is Insider Buying?

It is perfectly legal for company insiders, including board members, to buy and sell stock in a company. However, rules govern insider transactions, and certain disclosures are required.

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

View our latest analysis for Spirax-Sarco Engineering

Spirax-Sarco Engineering Insider Transactions Over The Last Year

In the last twelve months, the biggest single purchase by an insider was when Independent Chairman of the Board James Robert Pike bought UK£101k worth of shares at a price of UK£80.90 per share. So it's clear an insider wanted to buy, at around the current price, which is UK£91.35. While their view may have changed since the purchase was made, this does at least suggest they have had confidence in the company's future. If someone buys shares at well below current prices, it's a good sign on balance, but keep in mind they may no longer see value. In this case we're pleased to report that the insider bought shares at close to current prices. James Robert Pike was the only individual insider to buy over the year.

The chart below shows insider transactions (by individuals) over the last year. By clicking on the graph below, you can see the precise details of each insider transaction!

LSE:SPX Recent Insider Trading, January 16th 2020

There are plenty of other companies that have insiders buying up shares. You probably do not want to miss this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying.

Insider Ownership of Spirax-Sarco Engineering

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 appears that Spirax-Sarco Engineering insiders own 0.2% of the company, worth about UK£11m. This level of insider ownership is good but just short of being particularly stand-out. It certainly does suggest a reasonable degree of alignment.

So What Does This Data Suggest About Spirax-Sarco Engineering Insiders?

It doesn't really mean much that no insider has traded Spirax-Sarco Engineering shares in the last quarter. However, our analysis of transactions over the last year is heartening. Overall we don't see anything to make us think Spirax-Sarco Engineering insiders are doubting the company, and they do own shares. 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.

Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a peek at this free list of interesting 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.

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.

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