Insider Trading Report Edition 280: Notable Buys And Sales

Welcome to edition 280 of Insider Weekends. Insider buying more than doubled last week with insiders buying $122.24 million of stock compared to $50.95 million in the week prior. Selling also increased with insiders selling $1.36 billion of stock last week compared to $417.9 million in the week prior.

Sell/Buy Ratio: The insider Sell/Buy ratio is calculated by dividing the total insider sales in a given week by total insider purchases that week. The adjusted ratio for last week went up to 11.14. In other words, insiders sold more than 11 times as much stock as they purchased. The Sell/Buy ratio this week compares unfavorably with the prior week, when the ratio stood at 8.2. We are calculating an adjusted ratio by removing transactions by funds and companies and trying as best as possible only to retain information about insiders and 10% owners who are not funds or companies.

Insider Sell Buy Ratio October 30, 2015

Insider Sell Buy Ratio October 30, 2015

Note: As mentioned in the first post in this series, certain industries have their preferred metrics such as same store sales for retailers, funds from operations (FFO) for REITs and revenue per available room (RevPAR) for hotels that provide a better basis for comparison than simple valuation metrics. However metrics like Price/Earnings, Price/Sales and Enterprise Value/EBITDA included below should provide a good starting point for analyzing the majority of stocks.

Notable Insider Buys:

1. Greenhill & Co. Inc. (GHL): $25.82

Chief Executive Officer Scott L. Bok acquired 202,510 shares of this investment bank with a focus on mergers and acquisitions, paying $24.89 per share for a total amount of $5.04 million. Mr. Bok increased his stake by 99.33% to 406,377 shares with this purchase.

The company sports a dividend yield of 6.84%. The company not only maintained its dividend through the last financial crisis but actually increased it in early 2008. Despite the recent boom in M&A activity, the top line has not increased much at Greenhill.

You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Greenhill & Co. Inc. here.

P/E: 24.24 Forward P/E: 14.59 Industry P/E: 22.62
P/S: 2.96 Price/Book: 2.68 EV/EBITDA: N/A
Market Cap: $757.07M Avg. Daily Volume: 373,565 52 Week Range: $23.77 – $47.52

2. Vital Therapies, Inc. (VTL): $7.77

Shares of this biotherapeutic company were acquired by 3 insiders:

  • Director Muneer A. Satter acquired 400,000 shares, paying $5.50 per share for a total amount of $2.2 million. These shares were purchased indirectly through various trusts.
  • General Counsel and Secretary John Michael Dunn acquired 9,385 shares, paying $6.81 per share for a total amount of $63,933.
  • Director Cheryl Cohen acquired 3,500 shares, paying $7.17 per share for a total amount of $25,090. These shares were purchased indirectly through a trust.
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Disclosure: None.

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