Companies use employee stock ownership programs to motivate employees and give them a sense of ownership. When employees go out and spend their own money to buy stock in the company they work for, it is a strong sign of confidence. Fortunately for us, this type of activity must be made public.
While insider buying does show confidence in the future value of a stock, it's still important to examine the fundamentals of a company before investing. When employee of a company at the director level and above purchase stock in their company they must file a form 4. While going through these recent fillings, we found 3 REITs that have dividend yields over 3% and have had recent insider buying.
Investors Real Estate Trust (NYSE:IRET)
Jeffrey Miller (Director) purchased 5,000 shares on 1/19/2012 and John Reed (Director) purchased 1884 shares on 1/6/12. IRET has a dividend yield of 7.8%, but it recently cut its dividend distribution from $0.1715 to $0.13 quarterly. IRET bottomed out in November 2011 and has since put on an 11% gain.
Investors Real Estate Trust is structured as an UPREIT and conducts operations through its partnership IRET properties. They own and operate income producing properties. IRET invests in multi-family properties and commercial properties.
Urstadt Biddle Properties Inc (NYSE:UBP)
Willing Biddle (President and COO) and Charles Urstadt are both 10% owners in Urstadt properties. On 2/3/12 they each purchased 100,000 shares, which was after the recent run up in share price. The stock was trading around $19 per share on February 3rd, which makes it close to a $1.9M investment for each of them. UBP has a dividend yield of 4.6% and has increased its dividend for 12 consecutive years.
Urstadt Biddle is a REIT that acquires, owns and manages commercial real estate. Most of its properties are shopping centers and office buildings. It focuses on owning income producing properties. In Q3 of 2011 they owned or had interest in 52 such properties.
Dynex Capital Inc (NYSE:DX)
Barry Igdaloff (Director) purchased 1,600 shares of DX on 2/1/12. DX has a dividend yield of 12%. It has increased its dividend again in 2012, giving it 4 consecutive years of dividend increases.
Dynex Capital is a REIT that invests in mortgage assets. It has a long-term focus on providing risk-adjusted returns to its shareholders through both capital appreciation and quarterly distributions. Dynex invests in commercial and residential mortgage backed securities guaranteed by the US government. It also invests in mortgage backed securities with no agency backing.
Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.