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Analysts often follow the buying trends of institutional investors and company insiders. Both groups tend to have more information about companies than most investors – institutional investors have access to sophisticated research, while insiders always get the inside scoop.

We ran a screen on stocks trading under $5 for those seeing significant net institutional purchases over the current quarter and significant net insider purchases over the last six months.

Interactive Chart: Press Play to compare changes in analyst ratings over the last two years for the top six stocks mentioned below. Analyst ratings sourced from Zacks Investment Research.

We also created a price-weighted index of the stocks mentioned below, and monitored the performance of the list relative to the S&P 500 index over the last month. To access a complete analysis of this list's recent performance, click here.


(Click to enlarge)

Do you agree with insiders and institutions on these names? Use this list as a starting-off point for your own analysis.

List sorted by price.

1. US Concrete Inc. (NASDAQ:USCR): Engages in the production and sale of ready-mixed concrete, precast concrete products, and concrete-related products for use in commercial, residential, and public works construction projects in the United States. Market cap of $58.75M. Price at $4.90 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 149.41K, which is 1.90% of the company's 7.85M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 1.2M, which is 15.29% of the company's 7.85M share float. The stock has performed poorly over the last month, losing 24.62%.

2. Harvard Bioscience Inc. (NASDAQ:HBIO): Develops, manufactures, and markets apparatus and scientific instruments used in life science research in pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, universities, and government laboratories in the United States and internationally. Market cap of $135.33M. Price at $4.75 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 100.0K, which is 0.49% of the company's 20.52M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 1.6M, which is 7.80% of the company's 20.52M share float. The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 12.83% over the last week.

3. Luby's Inc. (NYSE:LUB): Engages in the ownership and operation of restaurants in the United States. Market cap of $122.69M. Price at $4.36 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 156.61K, which is 0.97% of the company's 16.09M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 1.2M, which is 7.46% of the company's 16.09M share float. The stock has lost 10.84% over the last year.

4. Synta Pharmaceuticals Corp. (NASDAQ:SNTA): Focuses on the discovery, development, and commercialization of small molecule drug candidates for treating severe medical conditions, including cancer and chronic inflammatory diseases. Market cap of $203.45M. Price at $4.11 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 1.55M, which is 5.14% of the company's 30.08M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 4.3M, which is 14.30% of the company's 30.08M share float. This is a risky stock that is significantly more volatile than the overall market (beta = 2.53). The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 9.4% (equivalent to 17.35 days of average volume). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 9.6% over the last week.

5. PowerSecure International, Inc. (NYSE:POWR): Provides energy technology products, services, and data management systems to industrial and commercial users, and suppliers of natural gas and electricity. Market cap of $76.07M. Price at $4.01 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 24.0K, which is 0.16% of the company's 15.38M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 1.2M, which is 7.80% of the company's 15.38M share float. The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 11.45% (equivalent to 19.13 days of average volume). The stock has performed poorly over the last month, losing 14.86%.

6. TranS1, Inc. (TSON): Focuses on the design, development, and marketing of products that implement its proprietary surgical approach to treat degenerative disc disease and instability affecting the lower lumbar region of the spine. Market cap of $79.61M. Price at $3.80 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 12.38K, which is 0.15% of the company's 8.24M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 1.1M, which is 13.35% of the company's 8.24M share float. It's been a rough couple of days for the stock, losing 11.63% over the last week.

7. Neoprobe Corp. (NEOP): Engages in the development and commercialization of surgical and diagnostic oncology products that enhance patient treatment by meeting the critical decision making needs of physicians in the United States and internationally. Market cap of $294.52M. Price at $3.11 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 100.32K, which is 0.11% of the company's 87.79M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 17.5M, which is 19.93% of the company's 87.79M share float. The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 13.28% (equivalent to 11.01 days of average volume). The stock has had a good month, gaining 18.7%.

8. TranSwitch Corp. (TXCC): Designs, develops, and supplies semiconductor and intellectual property solutions for voice, data, and video communications equipment. Market cap of $90.71M. Price at $2.98 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 422.30K, which is 1.86% of the company's 22.66M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 2.5M, which is 11.03% of the company's 22.66M share float. The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 9.16% over the last week.

9. Midway Gold Corp. (NYSEMKT:MDW): Engages in the acquisition, exploration, and development of mineral properties in North America. Market cap of $322.78M. Price at $2.89 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 100.0K, which is 0.13% of the company's 76.11M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 10.9M, which is 14.32% of the company's 76.11M share float. Exhibiting strong upside momentum--currently trading 15.05% above its SMA20, 19.72% above its SMA50, and 65.05% above its SMA200. The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 7.04% over the last week.

10. Furniture Brands International Inc. (FBN): Designs, manufactures, sources, and retails home furnishings. Market cap of $150.41M. Price at $2.71 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 75.01K, which is 0.16% of the company's 47.26M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 3.3M, which is 6.98% of the company's 47.26M share float. This is a risky stock that is significantly more volatile than the overall market (beta = 2.6). The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 10.01% (equivalent to 12.77 days of average volume). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 11.07% over the last week.

11. Celldex Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:CLDX): Engages in the development, manufacture, and commercialization of targeted immunotherapies that prevent or treat specific forms of cancer, autoimmune disorders, and diseases caused by infectious organisms. Market cap of $119.65M. Price at $2.70 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 77.50K, which is 0.19% of the company's 39.91M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 8.6M, which is 21.55% of the company's 39.91M share float. The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 10.6% (equivalent to 14.56 days of average volume). The stock has lost 27.73% over the last year.

12. Capital Bank Corporation (CBKN): Operates as the holding company for Capital Bank that provides general commercial banking products and services in North Carolina. Market cap of $217.07M. Price at $2.53 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 99.65K, which is 0.71% of the company's 13.97M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 965.3K, which is 6.91% of the company's 13.97M share float. The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 5.42% over the last week. The stock has performed poorly over the last month, losing 16.23%.

13. PharmAthene, Inc. (NYSEMKT:PIP): Engages in the development and commercialization of medical countermeasures against biological and chemical weapons in the United States. Market cap of $111.41M. Price at $2.31 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 430.0K, which is 1.42% of the company's 30.21M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 2.4M, which is 7.94% of the company's 30.21M share float. The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 8.36% (equivalent to 5.8 days of average volume). The stock has gained 56.08% over the last year.

14. The McClatchy Company (NYSE:MNI): Operates as a newspaper publisher in the United States. Market cap of $122.69M. Price at $1.44 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 318.80K, which is 0.66% of the company's 48.48M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 9.9M, which is 20.42% of the company's 48.48M share float. This is a risky stock that is significantly more volatile than the overall market (beta = 3.25). The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 45.21% (equivalent to 33.75 days of average volume). It's been a rough couple of days for the stock, losing 8.28% over the last week.

15. Sunesis Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ:SNSS): Focuses on the development and commercialization of oncology therapeutics for the treatment of solid and hematologic cancers. Market cap of $66.80M. Price at $1.43 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 100.0K, which is 0.38% of the company's 26.15M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 1.5M, which is 5.74% of the company's 26.15M share float. This is a risky stock that is significantly more volatile than the overall market (beta = 2.06). The stock has gained 217.78% over the last year.

16. Valence Technology Inc. (VLNC): Develops, manufactures, sells, and supplies high-energy power systems in the United States and internationally. Market cap of $182.68M. Price at $1.10 as of 9/15. Net insider shares purchased over the last six months at 3.59M, which is 4.19% of the company's 85.61M share float. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 17.1M, which is 19.97% of the company's 85.61M share float. The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 12.08% (equivalent to 10.93 days of average volume). The stock has gained 6.8% over the last year.

*Insider data sourced from Yahoo! Finance, institutional data sourced from Fidelity, all other data sourced from Finviz.

Source: 16 Stocks Under $5 Being Bought Up By Insiders And The Smart Money