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There are many different strategies to trade stocks and one of them is to find insider trading of stocks. When corporate insiders trade in their own securities, they must report their trades to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), usually within a few business days of the trade. Insider trading cannot be based on material non-public information. However, many investors believe that corporate insiders may have better insights into the growth of the company and its proceedings.

In this article, I will focus on notable insider buy transactions (market cap greater than $250 million) filed at the Securities and Exchange Commission on August 22, 2012. I have also included the key financial metrics for the first three companies. You can use this list as a potential starting point for your analysis.

Definition of Insider: Corporate insiders are either a company's officers, directors, or any beneficial owners of more than ten percent of a class of the company's equity securities registered under Section 12 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.

1. Molycorp, Inc (MCP): Molycorp is a development stage company, engages in the production and sale of rare earth oxides in the western hemisphere. Molycorp has a market cap of $1.06 billion and is currently trading around $9.64 with a 52-week range of $9.56 to $58.74. The stock has fallen 59.8% year to date.

According to SEC filings on August 22, 2012, Molibdenos Y Metales S.A. (Beneficial Owner) purchased a total of 4,500,000 shares at a total value of $45,000,000. Recently, Molycorp announced its proposed offerings of Convertible Senior Notes and common stock to raise the capital. On August 21, 2012, JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) lowered Molycorp's price target from $11.50 to $8.50 and maintained its UNDERWEIGHT rating on the stock. The current price is fairly close to its 52-week low.

Over the past three months, there have been a total of three insider transactions and all of them have been Buy transactions. The key financial metrics for Molycorp are given below:

The following chart provides the insider trading summary for three-month and 12-month periods.

2. Sonus Networks, Inc (SONS): Sonus Networks provides infrastructure and subscriber solutions. It offers session border control, voice over Internet protocol, and access and VoIP media gateway solutions that allow the delivery of voice and multimedia sessions over IP networks. Sonus Networks has a market cap of $512.38 million and is currently trading around $1.83 with a 52-week range of $1.56 to $3.11. The stock has fallen 23.75% year to date.

According to SEC filings on August 22, 2012, Empire Capital Management, LLC (Beneficial Owner) purchased a total of 413,382 shares at a total value of $748,221. Please refer the footnotes from Form 4 for more information on the ownership. Over the past three months, there have been a total of 23 insider transactions with 18 Buy transactions. The key financial metrics for Sonus Networks are given below:

The following chart provides the insider trading summary for three-month and 12-month periods.

3. Opko Health Inc (OPK): Opko Health is a pharmaceutical and diagnostics company, engages in the discovery, development, and commercialization of novel and proprietary technologies primarily in the United States, Chile, and Mexico. Opko Health has a market cap of $1.30 billion and is currently trading around $4.37 with a 52-week range of $3.57 to $5.85. The stock has fallen 10.82% year to date.

According to SEC filings on August 22, 2012, Frost Phillip Md Et Al (CEO & Chairman) purchased a total of 80,000 shares at a total value of $344,888. Please refer the footnotes from Form 4 for more information on the ownership. Frost Phillip has been a buyer of this stock almost every day this year. On August 22, 2012, OPKO Health was awarded a contract and selected to participate in a development project directed by NASA to implement the OPKO point-of-care diagnostic platform (Claros-1™) with the objective of in-orbit use on the International Space Station.

Over the past three months, there have been a total of 56 insider transactions and all of them have been Buy transactions. The key financial metrics for Opko Health are given below:

The following chart provides the insider trading summary for three-month and 12-month periods.

Other notable insider buy transactions (minimum transaction value of $100,000) filed with the SEC on August 22, 2012 are as follows:

4. Hi-Crush Partners LP (HCLP): Hi-Crush Partners LP is a domestic producer of monocrystalline sand, a specialized mineral that is used as a proppant to enhance the recovery rates of hydrocarbons from oil and natural gas wells. Hi-Crush Partners LP has a market cap of $525.97 million and is currently trading around $19.28 with a 52-week range of $17.00 to $20.15. The stock has gained 12.49% year to date. According to SEC filings on August 22, 2012, Hi-Crush Partners LP had three insiders combined purchase a total of 35,500 shares at a total value of $603,500 (calculated based on weighted average price). Hi-Crush Partners LP completed their initial public offering (IPO) on August 16, 2012, with an initial offering price of $17 per share.

5. Simmons First National Corporation (SFNC): Simmons First National provides a range of banking products and services to individual and corporate customers in Arkansas, Missouri, and Kansas. Simmons First National has a market cap of $403.54 million and is currently trading around $24.02 with a 52-week range of $18.71 to $28.54. The stock has fallen 11.66% year to date. According to SEC filings on August 22, 2012, Makris George Jr (Director) purchased a total of 10,725 shares at a total value of $261,368.

6. Midstates Petroleum Company Inc (MPO): Midstates Petroleum Company engages in oil and gas exploration and development. Midstates Petroleum Company has a market cap of $531.73 million and is currently trading around $7.99 with a 52-week range of $7.30 to $16.95. The stock has fallen 46.73% year to date. According to SEC filings on August 22, 2012, Crum John A (President and CEO) purchased a total of 25,000 shares at a total value of $201,000 (calculated based on weighted average price).

7. PHH Corporation (PHH): PHH Corporation provides business process management services for the mortgage and fleet industries in the United States and Canada. PHH Corporation has a market cap of $1.03 billion and is currently trading around $18.16 with a 52-week range of $8.75 to $19.56. The stock has gained 69.72% year to date. According to SEC filings on August 22, 2012, Tucker David E (Executive Vice President, Mortgage) purchased a total of 10,000 shares at a total value of $179,417.

8. Alleghany Corporation (Y): Alleghany Corporation, through its subsidiaries, engages in the property and casualty, and surety insurance business in the United States. Alleghany Corporation has a market cap of $2.94 billion and is currently trading around $333.2 with a 52-week range of $277.03 to $349.64. The stock has gained 16.79% year to date. According to SEC filing son August 22, 2012, Brandon Joseph Patrick (Executive Vice President) purchased a total of 500 shares at a total value of $166,850.

9. Harte-Hanks, Inc (HHS): Harte-Hanks is a direct and targeted marketing company, provides direct marketing services and shopper advertising opportunities to local, regional, national, and international consumer and business-to-business marketers. Harte-Hanks has a market cap of $450.59 million and is currently trading around $7.15 with a 52-week range of $6.16 to $10.24. The stock has fallen 21.34% year to date. According to SEC filings on August 22, 2012, Franklin Larry (President and CEO) purchased a total of 22,300 shares at a total value of $158,988.

10. TETRA Technologies, Inc (TTI): TETRA Technologies operates as a diversified oil and gas services company. TETRA Technologies has a market cap of $526.77 million and is currently trading around $6.75 with a 52-week range of $6.09 to $10.97. The stock has fallen 27.73% year to date. According to SEC filings on August 22, 2012, Serrano Elijio V (Senior Vice President & CFO) purchased a total of 22,500 shares at a total value of $150,300.

11. Ruby Tuesday, Inc (RT): Ruby Tuesday, together with its subsidiaries, owns, develops, operates, and franchises casual dining restaurants. Ruby Tuesday has a market cap of $453.67 million and is currently trading around $7.05 with a 52-week range of $4.98 to $9.39. The stock has gained 2.17% year to date. According to SEC filings on August 22, 2012, Cardwell F Lane Jr (Director) purchased a total of 18,942 shares at a total value of $128,675.

12. Valhi, Inc (VHI): Valhi Inc operates in the chemicals, component products, and waste management businesses. Valhi Inc has a market cap of $4.33 billion and is currently trading around $12.78 with a 52-week range of $10.67 to $21.69. The stock has fallen 36.61% year to date. According to SEC filings on August 22, 2012, Simmons Harold C (Chairman of the Board) purchased a total of 10,000 shares at a total value of $127,680. Please refer the footnotes from Form 4 for more information on the ownership.

13. German American Bancorp., Inc (GABC): German American Bancorp Inc. operates as the holding company for German American Bancorp that offers retail and commercial banking, mortgage banking, and financial planning services primarily in southern Indiana. German American Bancorp has a market cap of $285.94 million and is currently trading around $22.64 with a 52-week range of $14.65 to $23.50. The stock has gained 24.46% year to date. According to SEC filings on August 22, 2012, German American Bancorp had six insiders combined purchase a total of 5,708 shares at a total value of $119,982. Multiple insider purchases are usually a positive sign.

Source: Some of the data is sourced from Google Finance, Nasdaq, Finviz, Fidelity, and SEC.gov.

Disclaimer: I am not a registered investment advisor and do not provide specific investment advice. The information contained herein is for informational purposes only. Nothing in this article should be taken as a solicitation to purchase or sell securities. Before buying or selling any stock you should do your own research and reach your own conclusion. It is up to investors to make the correct decision after necessary research. The information and data is believed to be accurate, but no guarantees or representations are made.

Source: Insiders Bought These Shares On August 22