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We often see insiders buying up shares in companies that perform well over the long term. Unfortunately, there are also plenty of examples of share prices declining precipitously after insiders have sold shares. So we'll take a look at whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. (NYSE:APD).
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, rules govern insider transactions, and certain disclosures are required.
We don't think shareholders should simply follow insider transactions. But it is perfectly logical to keep tabs on what insiders are doing. 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 Air Products and Chemicals
Chairman Seifollah Ghasemi made the biggest insider purchase in the last 12 months. That single transaction was for US$3.2m worth of shares at a price of US$160 each. Even though the purchase was made at a significantly lower price than the recent price (US$204), we still think insider buying is a positive. While it does suggest insiders consider the stock undervalued at lower prices, this transaction doesn't tell us much about what they think of current prices.
In the last twelve months insiders paid US$3.2m for 20200 shares purchased. While Air Products and Chemicals insiders bought shares last year, they didn't sell. 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!
There are always plenty of stocks that insiders are buying. So if that suits your style you could check each stock one by one or you could take a look at this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).
Insider Ownership of Air Products and Chemicals
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. Air Products and Chemicals insiders own about US$116m worth of shares (which is 0.3% of the company). I like to see this level of insider ownership, because it increases the chances that management are thinking about the best interests of shareholders.
So What Does This Data Suggest About Air Products and Chemicals Insiders?
The fact that there have been no Air Products and Chemicals insider transactions recently certainly doesn't bother us. But insiders have shown more of an appetite for the stock, over the last year. It would be great to see more insider buying, but overall it seems like Air Products and Chemicals insiders are reasonably well aligned (owning significant chunk of the company's shares) and optimistic for the future. Of course, the future is what matters most. So if you are interested in Air Products and Chemicals, 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.
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 email@example.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.