Huge Insider Selling as Markets Approach All-Time Highs Again

Needless to say, when a market has an almost six-year run like we have seen, insiders are itching to take some money off the table. With investors witnessing an explosive rally to the upside this week, and everything from the data trough, including the monthly jobs numbers, looking better, the stock market has reclaimed all the territory lost in January and early this month.

We cover insider selling each week here at 24/7 Wall St., and we like to remind our readers that insider selling does not necessarily reflect bad times are ahead for a company. Often sellers are either top executives who are compensated with stock or stock options, or 10% owners who may have been in the company since before the initial public offering.

Here are the companies that saw significant insider selling this past week.

Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) saw a gigantic insider sell trade this week. Silicon Valley legend Marc Andreessen, who was a very early investor in the stock, felt it was time to sell, and he really sold: 853,994 shares of the social media giant’s stocks at $77.38 apiece. The total sale came to $66.1 million. He is best known as coauthor of Mosaic, the first widely used Web browser, and as cofounder of Netscape Communications. The stock closed trading Friday at $74.47, so his timing remains impeccable.

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Inogen Inc. (NASDAQ: INGN) had a director at the firm sell stock this past week. A total of 690,000 shares of the stock were sold at prices that ranged from $31 to $32. The total for the sale came to $22 million. Inogen is a medical technology company that develops, manufactures and markets portable oxygen concentrators. Shares ended Friday at $30.60.

Charles Schwab Corp. (NYSE: SCHW) takes what is becoming a weekly seat on our insider selling table. The venerable founder of the discount brokerage firm, Charles Schwab, continued his selling ways by parting with an additional 722,391 shares priced at $27.33. The total of the sale came to $19.7 million. The stock was trading at $29.11 at Friday’s close, so a good chunk was left on the table.

Celadon Group Inc. (NYSE: CGI) had both the CEO and the chairman of the company sell stock this past week. The two combined to move 157,357 shares of the stock at prices that ranged from $24.31 to $24.46. The total for the sale was $3.8 million. The company provides transportation services between the United States, Canada and Mexico and it operates through two segments. The Asset-Based segment provides dry van carrier and rail services. The Asset-Light segment offers warehousing, brokerage and less-than-load services. Shares were trading hands at the end of Friday’s session at $24.59, so again, a little left on the table.

Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA) also saw two executives from the C suite shed stock. The chief accounting officer and the chief operating officer combined sold a total of 68,491 shares of the video game company’s stock at prices between $54.77 and $55.00. The total of the transaction came to $3.8 million. Shares ended the week at $55.14.

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In addition, these companies also saw some insiders sell stock this past week: Carlyle Group L.P. (NASDAQ: CG), J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc. (NASDAQ: JBHT), SL Green Realty Group (NYSE: SLG) and Ultimate Software Group Inc. (NASDAQ: ULTI).

Insider selling had some big trades, but for the most part, the selling was moderate when the huge stock market rise over the years is taken into account, and it was more than matched by sizable insider buying.

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