In this article, I will feature one tech stock that has seen intensive insider selling during the last 30 days. Intensive insider selling can be defined by the following three criteria:
- The stock was sold by three or more insiders within one month.
- The stock was not purchased by any insiders in the month of intensive selling.
- At least two sellers decreased their holdings by more than 10%.
Analog Devices (NYSE:ADI) is engaged in the design, manufacture, and marketing of analog, mixed-signal, and digital signal processing integrated circuits for use in industrial, automotive, consumer, and communication markets worldwide.
Insider selling during the last 30 days
Here is a table of Analog Devices' insider-trading activity during the last 30 days by insider.
|Name||Title||Trade Date||Shares Sold||Rule 10b5-1||Current Ownership||Decrease In Ownership|
|Samuel Fuller||VP||Jan 6||2,000||No||14,678 shares + 7,000 options||8.4%|
|David Zinsner||CFO||Jan 2||5,000||Yes||18,251 shares + 56,400 options||6.3%|
|Ray Stata||Director||Dec 9-30||202,090||No||2,263,247 shares||8.2%|
|Thomas Wessel||VP||Dec 20||2,000||No||0 shares||100%|
|Margaret Seif||VP||Dec 16||3,000||No||5,352 shares||35.9%|
|Vincent Roche||CEO||Dec 10-Jan 6||73,675||No+Yes||16,723 shares + 10,000 options||73.4%|
There have been 287,765 shares sold by insiders during the last 30 days. Only two insiders used 10b5-1 plans. Vincent Roche sold 8,000 shares pursuant to a 10b5-1 plan, and David Zinsner sold 5,000 shares pursuant to a 10b5-1 plan.
SEC Rule 10b5-1 is a regulation enacted by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in 2000. The SEC states that Rule 10b5-1 was enacted in order to resolve an unsettled issue over the definition of insider trading, which is prohibited by SEC Rule 10b-5. After Rule 10b5-1 was enacted, the SEC staff publicly took the position that canceling a planned trade made under the safe harbor does not constitute insider trading, even if the person was aware of the inside information when canceling the trade. This staff interpretation raises the possibility that executives can exploit this safe harbor by entering into 10b5-1 trading plans before they have inside information while retaining the option to later cancel those plans based on inside information.
For example, a CEO of a company could call a broker on January 1 and enter into a plan to sell a particular quantity of shares of his company's stock on March 1, find out terrible news about his company on February 1 that will not become public until April 1, and then go forward with the March 1 sale anyway, saving himself from losing money when the bad news becomes public. Under the terms of Rule 10b5-1(b) this is insider trading because the CEO "was aware" of the inside information when he made the trade. But he can assert an affirmative defense under Rule 10b5-1(c), because he planned the trade before he learned the inside information.
In general, it is a safer way for an insider to sell shares pursuant to a Rule 10b5-1 trading plan than without it.
Insider selling by calendar month
Here is a table of Analog Devices' insider-trading activity by calendar month.
|Month||Insider selling / shares||Insider buying / shares|
There have been 1,218,352 shares sold, and there have been zero shares purchased by insiders since January 2013. The month of December has seen the most insider selling.
Analog Devices reported the fiscal 2013 full-year, which ended November 2, financial results on November 26 with the following highlights:
|Net income||$673.5 million|
Analog Devices' fiscal 2014 first-quarter guidance is as follows:
|Revenue growth||-5% to -10%|
Analog Devices has the highest P/S ratio among these four companies.
Here is a table of these competitors' insider-trading activities during the last 12 months.
|Company||Insider buying / shares||Insider selling / shares|
Only Analog Devices has seen intensive insider selling during the last 30 days.
There have been six different insiders selling Analog Devices, and there have not been any insiders buying Analog Devices during the last 30 days. Three of these six insiders decreased their holdings by more than 10%. Analog Devices has an insider ownership of 0.30%.
There are 13 analyst buy ratings, 13 neutral ratings, and zero sell ratings with an average price target of $49.16. Before entering short Analog Devices, I would like to get a bearish confirmation from the Point and Figure chart. The four main reasons for the proposed short entry are bearish analyst price targets, relatively high P/S ratio, weak guidance, and the intensive insider-selling activity.
Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.