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How Much Are Life Storage, Inc. (NYSE:LSI) Insiders Taking Off The Table?

Gabriel Boyd

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 before you buy or sell Life Storage, Inc. (NYSE:LSI), you may well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling.

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.

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. For example, a Colombia 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’.

See our latest analysis for Life Storage

Life Storage Insider Transactions Over The Last Year

Over the last year, we can see that the biggest insider sale was by Kenneth Myszka for US$472k worth of shares, at about US$94.39 per share. That means that an insider was selling shares at below the current price (US$98.09). While their view may have changed since they sold, this isn’t a particularly bullish sign. We generally consider it a negative if insiders have been selling on market, especially if they did so below the current price. Please note, however, that this single sale was just 2.8% of Kenneth Myszka’s stake.

Over the last year, we note insiders sold 13.66k shares worth US$1.3m. All up, insiders sold more shares in Life Storage than they bought, over the last year. The sellers received a price of around US$95.59, on average. It’s not particularly great to see insiders were selling shares around current prices. While some insiders have decided to take some money off the table, we wouldn’t put too much weight on this fact. You can see a visual depiction of insider transactions over the last 12 months, below. If you click on the chart, you can see all the individual transactions, including the share price, individual, and the date!

NYSE:LSI Insider Trading December 19th 18

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

Insiders at Life Storage Have Sold Stock Recently

The last three months saw significant insider selling at Life Storage. In total, insiders dumped US$941k 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.

Does Life Storage Boast High Insider Ownership?

I like to look at how many shares insiders own in a company, to help inform my view of how aligned they are with insiders. We usually like to see fairly high levels of insider ownership. Life Storage insiders own 1.6% of the company, currently worth about US$75m 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.

What Might The Insider Transactions At Life Storage Tell Us?

Insiders sold stock recently, but they haven’t been buying. Looking to the last twelve months, our data doesn’t show any insider buying. On the plus side, Life Storage makes money, and is growing profits. Insiders own shares, but we’re still pretty cautious, given the history of sales. So we’d only buy after careful consideration. Therefore, you should should definitely take a look at this FREE report showing analyst forecasts for Life Storage.

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.

To help readers see past the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements.

The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com.