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Should You Be Worried About Insider Transactions At Transurban Group (ASX:TCL)?

Simply Wall St

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 shareholders might well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in Transurban Group (ASX:TCL).

What Is Insider Buying?

It's quite normal to see company insiders, such as board members, trading in company stock, from time to time. However, rules govern insider transactions, and certain disclosures are required.

We would never suggest that investors should base their decisions solely on what the directors of a company have been doing. But it is perfectly logical to keep tabs on what insiders are doing. For example, a Harvard University study found that 'insider purchases earn abnormal returns of more than 6% per year.'

Check out our latest analysis for Transurban Group

The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At Transurban Group

The CEO & Executive Director, Scott Charlton, made the biggest insider sale in the last 12 months. That single transaction was for AU$6.5m worth of shares at a price of AU$12.94 each. That means that even when the share price was below the current price of AU$14.85, an insider wanted to cash in some shares. As a general rule we consider it to be discouraging when insiders are selling below the current price, because it suggests they were happy with a lower valuation. While insider selling is not a positive sign, we can't be sure if it does mean insiders think the shares are fully valued, so it's only a weak sign. This single sale was just 24.9% of Scott Charlton's stake. Notably Scott Charlton was also the biggest buyer, having purchased AU$4.2m worth of shares.

Happily, we note that in the last year insiders paid AU$4.2m for 392k shares. But insiders sold 510k shares worth AU$6.6m. Over the last year we saw more insider selling of Transurban Group shares, than buying. 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!

ASX:TCL Recent Insider Trading, August 19th 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).

Insider Ownership of Transurban Group

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. I reckon it's a good sign if insiders own a significant number of shares in the company. Transurban Group insiders own about AU$33m worth of shares. That equates to 0.08% of the company. This level of insider ownership is good but just short of being particularly stand-out. It certainly does suggest a reasonable degree of alignment.

So What Does This Data Suggest About Transurban Group Insiders?

There haven't been any insider transactions in the last three months -- that doesn't mean much. Our analysis of Transurban Group insider transactions leaves us cautious. But we do like the fact that insiders own a fair chunk of the company. Therefore, you should should definitely take a look at this FREE report showing analyst forecasts for Transurban Group.

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.

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.