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How Much Are Masco Corporation (NYSE:MAS) Insiders Taking Off The Table?

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 before you buy or sell Masco Corporation (NYSE:MAS), you may well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling.

What Is Insider Buying?

Most investors know that it is quite permissible for company leaders, such as directors of the board, to buy and sell stock on the market. 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'.

See our latest analysis for Masco

The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At Masco

The VP, Controller & Chief Accounting Officer, John Lindow, made the biggest insider sale in the last 12 months. That single transaction was for US$659k worth of shares at a price of US$39.16 each. That means that even when the share price was below the current price of US$40.47, an insider wanted to cash in some shares. We generally consider it a negative if insiders have been selling on market, especially if they did so below the current price, because it implies that they considered a lower price to be reasonable. However, while insider selling is sometimes discouraging, it's only a weak signal. It is worth noting that this sale was only 33.7% of John Lindow's holding.

We note that in the last year insiders divested 68645 shares for a total of US$2.6m. In the last year Masco insiders didn't buy any company stock. You can see the insider transactions (by individuals) over the last year depicted in the chart below. If you click on the chart, you can see all the individual transactions, including the share price, individual, and the date!

NYSE:MAS Recent Insider Trading, April 18th 2019

If you are like me, then you will not want to miss this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying.

Insiders at Masco Have Sold Stock Recently

The last quarter saw substantial insider selling of Masco shares. In total, insiders dumped US$2.2m worth of shares in that time, and we didn't record any purchases whatsoever. In light of this it's hard to argue that all the directors think that the shares are a bargain.

Insider Ownership of Masco

Many investors like to check how much of a company is owned by insiders. We usually like to see fairly high levels of insider ownership. Insiders own 0.6% of Masco shares, worth about US$76m. 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 Masco 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. But since Masco is profitable and growing, we're not too worried by this. While insiders do own shares, they don't own a heap, and they have been selling. We're in no rush to buy! 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.

But note: Masco 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.