While much of the insider activity has been restrained this week, some big-time players in the technology world took advantage of open windows to sell and unloaded stocks at a furious pace. That would appear disconcerting to some shareholders, but it is important to remember that some insiders have their companies purchased in stock, as was the case with one of this week’s sellers.
We cover insider selling every week at 24/7 Wall St., and we like to remind readers that just because an individual or 10% institutional owner is selling stock, that is no cause for immediate alarm. Many top executives, and even directors, are compensated with stock and often sell just to diversify portfolios or purchase other assets.
Here are companies that reported notable insider selling last week.
Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) is again the insider selling leader for last week as a director at the company, Jan Koum, sold two gigantic blocks of the social media giant’s shares for the fifth time in the past 60 days. Koum is an internet entrepreneur and computer programmer. He is the CEO and co-founder of WhatsApp, a mobile messaging application that was acquired by Facebook in February 2014 for $19 billion.
Koum sold a block of 566,668 shares of the stock at $128.80 per share. The total for that sale was posted at a huge $72,968,671. He then proceeded to sell an additional 364,554 shares of the company at a share price of $130.12. The total for that trade was $47,434,090. Facebook shares ended trading on Friday at $132.07.
Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOGL) had the CEO of Google selling shares this past week. Sundar Pichai parted with a total of 4,000 shares of the stock at a price of $801.27. The total for the trade was reported at $3,205,064. Shares of the technology behemoth closed on Friday at $824.06, so apparently some money was left on the table.
The chief product officer at ServiceNow Inc. (NYSE: NOW) thinned his stake last week. Frederic Luddy sold a total of 154,000 shares at prices that ranged from $74.87 to $76.21 apiece. The total for those sales was reported to be $11,630,829.
The company provides enterprise cloud-based solutions that define, structure, manage and automate services in North America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, the Asia Pacific and elsewhere. It offers service management solutions, including incident management, problem management, change management and request management, as well as service catalog and knowledge base; and information technology (IT), HR, customer service, security operations, facilities and field service management solutions. Its shares closed Friday at $80.06, so again some left on the table, it would appear.
Two top players at Workday Inc. (NASDAQ: WDAY) were selling shares last week. CEO Aneel Bhusri and Vice Chairman Michael Stankey were among a large group of top executives selling shares. Bhusri shed 10,317 shares of the stock at a price of $86.35, for total proceeds of $890,920. Stankey parted with 8,751 shares at $86.36 apiece. The total for his trade was posted at $755,745.
The company provides enterprise cloud applications for finance and human resources in the United States and internationally. It offers applications for customers to manage critical business functions that enable them to optimize their financial and human capital resources. The stock closed last Friday at $88.48.
Another company that saw the man at the top selling stock last week was Salesforce.com Inc. (NYSE: CRM). Marc Benioff, who is the chairman and the chief executive, parted with a total of 12,500 shares of the stock at a price of $72.79. The total for the sale was posted at $909,935.
This top software company provides enterprise cloud computing solutions, with a focus on customer relationship management to various businesses and industries worldwide. It offers enterprise cloud computing applications and platform services, including Sales Cloud, which enables companies to store data, monitor leads and progress, forecast opportunities, gain insights through relationship intelligence and collaborate around sales on desktop and mobile devices. The stock closed Friday at $74.00.
These companies also reported insider selling last week: Charles Schwab Corp. (NYSE: SCHW), GoDaddy Inc. (NYSE: GDDY), Halliburton Inc. (NYSE: HAL), Occidental Petroleum Corp. (NYSE: OXY) and Zynga Inc. (NASDAQ: ZNGA).
With the markets remaining close to all-time highs, as well as also exhibiting some increased volatility, it is no surprise to see stock sales. All the companies reporting these big sales have been doing tremendously, so shareholders have nothing to fear from these share sales.