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How Much Are Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (NASDAQ:VRTX) Insiders Taking Off The Table?

Simply Wall St

We often see insiders buying up shares in companies that perform well over the long term. 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 Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (NASDAQ:VRTX).

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 in the company. However, such insiders must disclose their trading activities, and not trade on inside information.

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 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'.

View our latest analysis for Vertex Pharmaceuticals

Vertex Pharmaceuticals Insider Transactions Over The Last Year

In the last twelve months, the biggest single sale by an insider was when the insider, Paul Silva, sold US$641k worth of shares at a price of US$188 per share. So what is clear is that an insider saw fit to sell at around the current price of US$172. While we don't usually like to see insider selling, it's more concerning if the sales take place at a lower price. Given that the sale took place at around current prices, it makes us a little cautious but is hardly a major concern. Paul Silva was the only individual insider to sell over the last year.

You can see a visual depiction of insider transactions (by individuals) over the last 12 months, below. By clicking on the graph below, you can see the precise details of each insider transaction!

NasdaqGS:VRTX Recent Insider Trading, September 13th 2019

If you like to buy stocks that insiders are buying, rather than selling, then you might just love this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).

Does Vertex Pharmaceuticals Boast High Insider Ownership?

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. Vertex Pharmaceuticals insiders own about US$37m worth of shares. That equates to 0.08% of the company. We've certainly seen higher levels of insider ownership elsewhere, but these holdings are enough to suggest alignment between insiders and the other shareholders.

So What Do The Vertex Pharmaceuticals Insider Transactions Indicate?

The fact that there have been no Vertex Pharmaceuticals insider transactions recently certainly doesn't bother us. We don't take much encouragement from the transactions by Vertex Pharmaceuticals insiders. The modest level of insider ownership is, at least, some comfort. Therefore, you should should definitely take a look at this FREE report showing analyst forecasts for Vertex Pharmaceuticals.

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.

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.