U.S. Markets open in 1 hr 35 mins

Should You Be Worried About Insider Transactions At Splitit Payments Ltd (ASX:SPT)?

Simply Wall St

We've lost count of how many times insiders have accumulated shares in a company that goes on to improve markedly. 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 Splitit Payments Ltd (ASX:SPT).

What Is Insider Selling?

It is perfectly legal for company insiders, including board members, to buy and sell stock in a company. However, such insiders must disclose their trading activities, and not trade on inside information.

We would never suggest that investors should base their decisions solely on what the directors of a company have been doing. But logic dictates you should pay some attention to whether insiders are buying or selling shares. 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'.

Check out our latest analysis for Splitit Payments

The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At Splitit Payments

Over the last year, we can see that the biggest insider sale was by the Chief Risk Officer & Director, Alon Feit, for AU$1.6m worth of shares, at about AU$0.80 per share. That means that an insider was selling shares at slightly below the current price (AU$0.91). When an insider sells below the current price, it suggests that they considered that lower price to be fair. That makes us wonder what they think of the (higher) recent valuation. However, while insider selling is sometimes discouraging, it's only a weak signal. We note that the biggest single sale was only 7.1% of Alon Feit's holding.

In the last twelve months insiders netted AU$2.1m for 2617326 shares sold. In the last year Splitit Payments insiders didn't buy any company stock. 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!

ASX:SPT Recent Insider Trading, October 18th 2019

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

Insider Ownership

Another way to test the alignment between the leaders of a company and other shareholders is to look at how many shares they own. Usually, the higher the insider ownership, the more likely it is that insiders will be incentivised to build the company for the long term. It appears that Splitit Payments insiders own 36% of the company, worth about AU$96m. We've certainly seen higher levels of insider ownership elsewhere, but these holdings are enough to suggest alignment between insiders and the other shareholders.

What Might The Insider Transactions At Splitit Payments Tell Us?

It doesn't really mean much that no insider has traded Splitit Payments shares in the last quarter. Our analysis of Splitit Payments insider transactions leaves us cautious. But it's good to see that insiders own shares in the company. Along with insider transactions, I recommend checking if Splitit Payments is growing revenue. This free chart of historic revenue and earnings should make that easy.

Of course Splitit Payments may not be the best stock to buy. So you may wish to see this free collection of high quality 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.