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Did Hays plc (LON:HAS) Insiders Buy Up More Shares?

Simply Wall St

It is not uncommon to see companies perform well in the years after insiders buy shares. The flip side of that is that there are more than a few examples of insiders dumping stock prior to a period of weak performance. So we'll take a look at whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in Hays plc (LON:HAS).

What Is Insider Buying?

Most investors know that it is quite permissible for company leaders, such as directors of the board, to buy and sell stock in the company. However, most countries require that the company discloses such transactions to the market.

We don't think shareholders should simply follow insider transactions. But it is perfectly logical to keep tabs on what insiders are doing. As Peter Lynch said, 'insiders might sell their shares for any number of reasons, but they buy them for only one: they think the price will rise.

See our latest analysis for Hays

The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At Hays

The insider, John Faraguna, made the biggest insider sale in the last 12 months. That single transaction was for UK£157k worth of shares at a price of UK£1.57 each. While we don't usually like to see insider selling, it's more concerning if the sales take place at a lower price. It's of some comfort that this sale was conducted at a price well above the current share price, which is UK£1.06. So it is hard to draw any strong conclusion from it. The only individual insider seller over the last year was John Faraguna.

Happily, we note that in the last year insiders paid UK£250k for 256.26k shares. But they sold 100000 shares for UK£157k. In the last twelve months there was more buying than selling by Hays insiders. You can see the insider transactions (by individuals) over the last year depicted in the chart below. If you want to know exactly who sold, for how much, and when, simply click on the graph below!

LSE:HAS Recent Insider Trading April 20th 2020

Hays is not the only stock that insiders are buying. For those who like to find winning investments this free list of growing companies with recent insider purchasing, could be just the ticket.

Insiders at Hays Have Bought Stock Recently

It's good to see that Hays insiders have made notable investments in the company's shares. Not only was there no selling that we can see, but they collectively bought UK£236k worth of shares. This is a positive in our book as it implies some confidence.

Insider Ownership

Looking at the total insider shareholdings in a company can help to inform your view of whether they are well aligned with common shareholders. Usually, the higher the insider ownership, the more likely it is that insiders will be incentivised to build the company for the long term. Insiders own 0.4% of Hays shares, worth about UK£6.3m, according to our data. Overall, this level of ownership isn't that impressive, but it's certainly better than nothing!

What Might The Insider Transactions At Hays Tell Us?

It's certainly positive to see the recent insider purchases. And the longer term insider transactions also give us confidence. We would certainly prefer see higher levels of insider ownership but analysis of the insider transactions suggests that Hays insiders are expecting a bright future. So while it's helpful to know what insiders are doing in terms of buying or selling, it's also helpful to know the risks that a particular company is facing. You'd be interested to know, that we found 2 warning signs for Hays and we suggest you have a look.

If you would prefer to check out another company -- one with potentially superior financials -- then do not miss this free list of interesting companies, that have HIGH return on equity and low debt.

For the purposes of this article, insiders are those individuals who report their transactions to the relevant regulatory body. We currently account for open market transactions and private dispositions, but not derivative transactions.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Thank you for reading.