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Schlumberger Limited's (NYSE:SLB) stock dropped 4.9% this week, offering solace to those who sold earlier in the year

Schlumberger Limited's (NYSE:SLB) value has fallen 4.9% in the last week, but insiders who sold US$12m worth of stock over the last year have had less success. Insiders would probably have been better off holding on to their shares given that the average selling price of US$46.02 is still lower than the current share price.

While we would never suggest that investors should base their decisions solely on what the directors of a company have been doing, we do think it is perfectly logical to keep tabs on what insiders are doing.

See our latest analysis for Schlumberger

The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At Schlumberger

In the last twelve months, the biggest single sale by an insider was when the Executive Vice President of Geographies, Khaled Al Mogharbel, sold US$3.2m worth of shares at a price of US$54.85 per share. So what is clear is that an insider saw fit to sell at around the current price of US$50.83. While insider selling is a negative, to us, it is more negative if the shares are sold at a lower price. In this case, the big sale took place at around the current price, so it's not too bad (but it's still not a positive).

Schlumberger insiders didn't buy any shares over the last year. The chart below shows insider transactions (by companies and individuals) over the last year. By clicking on the graph below, you can see the precise details of each insider transaction!

insider-trading-volume
insider-trading-volume

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

Schlumberger Insiders Are Selling The Stock

The last quarter saw substantial insider selling of Schlumberger shares. In total, insiders dumped US$6.1m worth of shares in that time, and we didn't record any purchases whatsoever. Overall this makes us a bit cautious, but it's not the be all and end all.

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. Schlumberger insiders own about US$137m worth of shares (which is 0.2% 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 Do The Schlumberger Insider Transactions Indicate?

Insiders haven't bought Schlumberger stock in the last three months, but there was some selling. Looking to the last twelve months, our data doesn't show any insider buying. But since Schlumberger is profitable and growing, we're not too worried by this. 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. So these insider transactions can help us build a thesis about the stock, but it's also worthwhile knowing the risks facing this company. In terms of investment risks, we've identified 2 warning signs with Schlumberger and understanding them should be part of your investment process.

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.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.

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