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 before you buy or sell NovoCure Limited (NASDAQ:NVCR), 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, most countries require that the company discloses such transactions to the market.
Insider transactions are not the most important thing when it comes to long-term investing. 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'.
The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At NovoCure
The Lead Independent Director, William Vernon, made the biggest insider sale in the last 12 months. That single transaction was for US$9.1m worth of shares at a price of US$91.03 each. So what is clear is that an insider saw fit to sell at around the current price of US$77.13. 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.
In the last twelve months insiders netted US$18m for 256931 shares sold. In the last year NovoCure insiders didn't buy any company stock. 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!
If you are like me, then you will not want to miss this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying.
NovoCure Insiders Are Selling The Stock
The last quarter saw substantial insider selling of NovoCure shares. In total, insiders dumped US$11m worth of shares in that time, and we didn't record any purchases whatsoever. This may suggest that some insiders think that the shares are not cheap.
Insider Ownership of NovoCure
Many investors like to check how much of a company is owned by insiders. A high insider ownership often makes company leadership more mindful of shareholder interests. NovoCure insiders own 19% of the company, currently worth about US$1.4b based on the recent share price. This kind of significant ownership by insiders does generally increase the chance that the company is run in the interest of all shareholders.
So What Does This Data Suggest About NovoCure Insiders?
Insiders haven't bought NovoCure stock in the last three months, but there was some selling. And even if we look to the last year, we didn't see any purchases. While insiders do own a lot of shares in the company (which is good), our analysis of their transactions doesn't make us feel confident about the company. Of course, the future is what matters most. So if you are interested in NovoCure, you should check out this free report on analyst forecasts for the company.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.