Insider Buying Strong as Top Executives Pounce on Beaten Down Shares

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One would think that insiders would stay on the sideline with the markets touching new highs this past week, but that was decidedly not the case. In fact, insider buying volume jumped last week, and part of the action was executives and 10% owners taking advantage of beaten down share prices to add to existing positions.

We cover insider buying each week here at 24/7 Wall St., and the amount of high-level executives and 10% institutional owners adding to positions is in line with recent weeks, but executives looking for big discounts seemed to be the rule. Insiders buy stock for many different reasons, but obviously the main one is they work there, or close to the company, and like what they see.

Here are companies that reported notable insider buying this past week.

Kinder Morgan Inc. (NYSE: KMI) has taken some heat in the financial press lately, and the stock has been battered as a result. That didn’t stop the executive chairman of the company from again stepping up to the plate and buying more stock. The top executive bought a 100,000-share block of the energy giant at $39.00 a share. The total for the buy came to $3.9 million. The CEO also bought a 12,000-share chunk of stock at $39.38, and that buy came to $473,000. The stock closed trading on Friday at $39.54.

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Sears Holdings Corp. (NASDAQ: SHLD) has been hit hard as the real estate investment trust (REIT) conversion chatter has died down, and a 10% owner was again buying shares of the iconic retailer. Fairholme Capital Management bought an additional block of 54,500 shares at prices that ranged from $28.00 to 28.88. Shares ended trading Friday at $29.23, so a well-timed buy.

Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. (NYSE: VRX) has soared this year, but that didn’t stop an executive vice president of the firm from buying stock. The EVP bought some 12,900 shares of the stock at $232.51 apiece. The total for the buy came to an even $3 million. However, shares were trading at $228.22 by Friday’s close.

Prospect Capital Corp. (NASDAQ: PSEC) is a very beaten down business development company, and executives at the top have been snatching up shares in recent weeks. The CEO of the firm bought a 140,000-share block of stock at $7.32 a share. The total for the trade came in right at $1 million. Shares closed trading on Friday at $7.72.

W.P. Glimcher Inc. (NYSE: WPG) had a director at the company purchase shares last week. The director acquired a block of 100,000 shares at $13.10 apiece. The total for the buy came to $1.3 million. This company is a premier retail REIT specializing in the ownership, management and development of shopping centers. Shares ended the week at $14.27.

These companies also reported insider buying this week: Alico Inc. (NASDAQ: ALCO), M&T Bank Corp. (NYSE: MTB), OCI Partners L.P. (NYSE: OCIP), SolarCity Corp. (NASDAQ: SCTY) and Tutor Perini Corp. (NYSE: TPC).

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Whether they are diving for beaten-down shares or just adding to existing holdings, the solid buying we saw this week indicates that while the bull may be getting tired, there may still be some upside yet.