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  • Insiders Are (Finally) Buying Clean Energy [View article]
    Hi Cool & Happyjoe.

    Didn't intend this to be a hatchet job. I do point out that the insider profile is finally bullish. But I also have to point out the finer points of the insider history that make the bullish insider rating weaker than many others we've seen lately. That's owed to the cold, hard statistics of the insiders' past returns--the details of which we happen to generate more of than other insider websites.

    It seems any disagreement we have on whether to buy CLNE right here and now comes down to differing opinions of the firm's fundamentals and the timing of a potential turnaround. Reasonable minds can differ there.

    But after years of not even needing to consider CLNE when I set out to invest in the fabulous trend of American energy independence (because of the insider selling), at least the stock is now on my radar. I'm very interested to see how next quarter's financials come out.

    I'd love to see CLNE's business model pan out for all the reasons I think the U.S. should take better advantage of its resources. It's just been so disappointing for so long...with the lack of support from the U.S. Congress to incentivize use of natural gas in vehicles not CLNE's fault.
    Mar 11 04:59 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Playing Momentum With Insiders [View article]
    Yeah, this is tougher to read than the tables in our previous stories. Hmmmm. I believe it's due to this table having more entries.

    I can still make it out even so, but I just right clicked the image and pasted in a Word file with no margins. The table takes up a normal page (as intended) this way.

    We'll take table length into consideration in future articles so this annoying extra step isn't necessary for some of you. Seems a shame to pare down this table now, though. We'll leave it as is, and hope this instruction helps those who need it.
    May 16 01:25 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Insiders Opting In [View article]
    Hi Alerts.

    I have to agree with you. CLMS demotion underway!

    May 9 07:33 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Insiders Opting In [View article]
    Hi HP.

    Don't lump all insider services together. I headlined the February 8, 2013 issue of our InsiderInsights Newlsetter with an editorial titled: "Ratio Wise, Dollar Foolish".

    It began:
    "The usual suspects have been generating alarmist stories over the past week about how a surge in insider selling is indicating that the market is set for a big pullback. These stories are based on dollar-value ratios of insiders buying and selling, and there is the possibility they could turn out to be prescient. More likely, however, is that going to cash right now because of these stories will be a mistake."

    After a thousand or so words backing up that assertion, I concluded:
    "we remain fully invested instead of in “Chicken Little” mode."

    I've been analyzing the behavioral data stream that is insider data for over 25 years, and supply data and independent research to hedge funds, institutional investors, brokers, and the like. Individual investors depending on only free sources of insider analysis will always be at a disadvantage.

    To a great extent, the democratization of investment advice has led to its mediocratization. That is particularly true with insider analysis. We're trying to raise the bar on Seeking Alpha. But we're only repurposing a fraction of what our paying clients get. We can't afford to give more away because it It takes real time, money, and experience to both program our value-added data feed, and mine it for investment intelligence.

    Your opinion that "This is totally meaningless data" tells me that you have been relying on only the free insider sources that (quite literally) litter the Internet.

    Academic studies, the experience of professional investors, our own track record--and just plain common sense--should tell you that analyzing the behavior of corporate executives relays valuable investment intelligence. But it takes real work.

    No self-respecting growth investor would blindly throw money in any stock with 100% EPS growth in its latest quarter. Was that growth $1 to $2, or 1 cent to 2 cents? It matters. And what of the quality of the earnings? What do the footnotes on the income statement and balance sheet indicate?

    The Form 4s insider report their trades on also have footnotes--which our computers scour in real time as we harvest the data. Our scoring paradigms also rate the quality of an insiders track record in more detail than the mere average return as well. But even after all that value add, we still roll up our sleeves and look at the histories with our own eyes.

    The end result of all our insider analysis is that we kept our paying clients way long starting last November up until now. We're remain in only 5% in cash as I write, while being wary of the many forces that could yet upset this latest bull run.

    We make it look easy. But it isn't. And while the conclusions we form from our top-down and bottom-up analysis of insider data isn't always right (hey, who is), the data itself is far from "meaningless".

    As always, just my $0.02.

    Jonathan Moreland
    Director of Research
    May 8 11:11 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Insiders Opting In [View article]
    Actually Tony, I hate to sound promotional, but our own site has all the value added free and subscription-based insider data and independent research you could want.

    I've never heard of the site Turner suggests. Room for everybody I guess, but I'll bet they don't go into the transactional detail we do to be able to generate ideas as in this Opting In story.

    Anybody can parse the XML from the SEC's feed these days. We focus on adding value to it for investors. There is so much noise in the data. Either you take the time to research the transactions yourself, or you pay a reasonable bit of money to have a service like ours do it for you.

    But check out our Free Insider Data at if money is an issue. The data is real-time, and we've tried to make the output of our ticker searches and Top 20 screens as useful as possible at a glance.

    As always, just my $0.02.

    Jonathan Moreland
    Director of Research
    May 8 10:28 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Taking Some Profits In Celsion [View article]

    With a potentially stock-moving event imminent, I would be a bad fiduciary for my clients to handcuff myself to promise not to trade within the next 72 hours. If there’s a spike, I may have to trim holdings as prudent portfolio management insists. If there’s a plunge, I may choose to take the loss or try a short-term trade depending on the news. Such actions follow naturally from what we said in the article itself.

    But your question seems to assume that we could—or think we could—move a market with our opinion, and that we would try to use such immense power to get a better entry or exit point. We have no such pretense even if you do.

    For example, the sentiment in yesterday’s CLSN article was voiced in our InsiderInsights Newsletter over two weeks ago, and on a TV appearance over one week ago. We also updated CLSN often in our InsiderInsights service last fall discussing when taking profits would be prudent. Our decision to do so was made and fist voiced on January 4th. That hasn’t stopped CLSN trading up a bit since then. And thank goodness it didn’t. We are still long the stock. We want it to go up.

    But let me finish by adding that you are expecting an awful lot from people whose free articles you read, if you expect that hoop to be jumped through by any SA contributor—especially a professional contributor. Even without CLSN’s imminent threat of volatility, I could never allow our content to check a box saying we won’t trade a position in the following three days. Our fiduciary duty is to paying clients, not readers of the small subset of free content from InsiderInsights we allow on the Internet.

    If that seems harsh, so be it. I can’t respond otherwise. I further can't see how us checking that box would make our opinions any more or less valid or useful, and any comfort you feel from reading articles from authors who do check that box is likely unwarranted.

    Jonathan Moreland
    Director of Research
    Insider Asset Management llc
    Jan 17 10:41 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Taking Some Profits In Celsion [View article]
    This is just ridiculous. Did you even read our article? Our article was focused on prudent risk management, and, in the end, positive on the stock from here.

    But thank you for reminding me why I don't allow our subscription InsiderInsights content to be down streamed on SA very much. The good is far outweighed by the bad when anonymous guys like yourself have too much time and too little thought behind your posts.

    Jonathan Moreland
    Director of Research
    Jan 16 03:19 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Taking Some Profits In Celsion [View article]
    We would appreciate if you would leave us our of your conspiracy sir. You are way off base bordering on abuse. My name is below. What is yours?

    Jonathan Moreland
    Director of Research
    Jan 16 02:32 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Taking Some Profits In Celsion [View article]
    Odd price action indeed. I don't think our article caused it. It obviously shouldn't have. The trading does seem to indicate the volatility that will ensue after results are released--up or down. As the article states, we still have some exposure, so we're hoping for the best. But if it is down, trading the inevitable overreaction may be a play judging by whatever spooked investors today.

    In the end, it doesn't matter what anyone writes about CLSN at this point. The results will be what the results will be.

    As always, just my $0.02.

    Jonathan Moreland
    Director of Research
    Jan 16 02:22 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Long Mako Surgical Alongside Insiders [View article]
    Yeah, it always seems ominous when stocks trade poorly into quarterly earnings events. But then I've seen poor trading that turned out to be right and wrong, and I've seen good trading into earnings that turned out to be wrong and right.

    We made our bet on Q3, and will win or lose on what happens in those numbers and guidance. The trading before hand isn't a reliable enough indicator for us to second guess that bet.

    MAKO isn't as high a risk/reward position as a biotech waiting for an FDA decision, but we still rate it high. Nobody should be in this stock thinking it owes them to spike higher after Q3, or be over weight the position. In our InsiderInsights Newsletter, MAKO is one of 29 positions at this time. We also hold a higher-than usual cash balance going into this earnings season.

    As always, just my $0.02.
    Oct 17 08:44 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Long Mako Surgical Alongside Insiders [View article]
    Hi. If you click the hyperlink behind "Frederick Moll" in the story it will show his transactions going back two years. You can then click the "view form" icon to see the source document for his transactions. He has presented himself as a "director" on his Form 4s for HNSN back in March. Did he make a mistake?
    Sep 14 09:17 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Top 5 Insider Buys Filed On August 22 [View article]

    You really need to take Vaun's comments to heart. For the contributor ranking as #1 in the Insider Ownership, you have remarkably little actual insider analysis. High dollar value does not equal a significant insider transaction. And when your picks don't pan out, the more impressionable readers on SA and YahooFinance! will conclude that following insider transactions is not worthwhile.

    Quantity over quality has made you #1 in terms of page views, but you have played the system to get that ranking. To some extent this is a matter of "don't hate the player, hate the game". So I don't really blame you for taking advantage of the rules of this outlet. But it is yet another obvious sign that the democratization of equity research has led mainly to its mediocratization. And if SA does not tighten its controls, it risks turning into a glorified chat room where the nuggets of useful analysis will be overwhelmed by worthless blather.

    Jonathan Moreland
    Director of Research
    Aug 24 12:46 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Insider Trades: Opportunity Or Sham? [View article]

    Unfortunately you neglected to go the necessary step of testing the returns of just the "significant" insider transactions. It is a common error in a high percentage of insider-based articles in SA--most of which present factual lists of high dollar value insider transactions as all being significant.

    The analysis you present is akin to calling growth investing a sham after presenting a ho-hum list of returns for stocks of firms that showed headline EPS growth of 30%. Was that 30% EPS growth from $10 to $13, or 1 cent to 1.3 cents? Most would agree it matters. A growth investor would also dig into the footnotes to determine the quality of the headline EPS number.

    Similar rigor is necessary to determine the quality of an insider's trade, and whether to consider it significant or just noise. Why so many investors (including professionals) think the extra work isn't necessary to make the most of the profitable stream of investment-specific behavioral finance information represented by the insider data is beyond me.

    Fact is, most insider transactions are just noise--even the large dollar value transactions. Eyeing your list I only see a few that our service ranked as significant. So you can produce all the plots, regressions, and stats you want on your population, but I'm afraid it will all amount to "garbage-in, garbage-out".

    In the end, making money from insider activity takes both time and (frankly) money to buy the best data and tools to assess it. There is no free lunch-never has been, and never will be. Anyone who thinks otherwise with insider data deserves the under performance they will inevitably generate by merely following any old insider trade.

    Jonathan Moreland
    Director of Research
    Aug 22 08:58 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Top Insider Trades 7/24/12 [View article]
    Obvious typo up top. Daniel Loeb's Third Point bought $39.4 million more of YHOO as indicated on the table, not the $9.4 million relayed in the text.
    Jul 25 07:46 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Top Insider Trades On May 16: Avoid The Noise [View article]

    The error was both rare, and already addressed in the previous comment. We even decided to keep the piece up despite the error because of the larger important points the piece relays about the noise in the data.

    So you're beating a dead horse. And the fact that you couldn't help yourself from penning a redundant snipe says much more about you than us.
    Jun 25 10:27 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment