Huge Sheryl Sandberg Trade Highlights Furious Insider Selling: Facebook, Shake Shack, Adobe and More

As the markets continued their roller-coaster movement, many top executives saw the markets trading again back up near all-time highs after an outstanding jobs report finished the week on Friday. With all the losses from the Brexit wiped out, one thing is becoming very obvious: insider selling is swamping buying with the markets right at the top, and with earnings starting in full force next week, trading windows may be closing soon.

We cover insider selling every week at 24/7 Wall St., and we like to remind our 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 or purchase other assets.

Here are companies that reported notable insider selling last week.


One of the most powerful people in the tech industry sold Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) shares this past week. Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg parted with a 109,000 share block of the social media giant at a price of $113.51 per share. The total for the sale was posted at $12,372,376. Despite the sale, Sandberg still owns a reported 4.6 million shares of the company. Facebook shares closed the day on Friday at $117.24 apiece, so some cash was left on the table, it appears.

Shake Shack

A Shake Shack Inc. (NYSE: SHAK) director also parted with some stock this week. That director, also a 10% owner, sold a total of 200,000 shares of the company at prices that ranged from $36.02 to $37.18 a share. The total for the sale came in at $7 million. Shake Shack owns, operates and licenses Shake Shack restaurants that offers hamburgers, hot dogs, crispy chicken, crinkle-cut fries, shakes, frozen custard, shakes, beer, wine and other products. The stock closed Friday at $36.79 a share.


A co-chairman at Adobe Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: ADBE) and two executive vice presidents all stepped up to the sell window last week. The trio combined to sell a total of 51,178 shares at prices that ranged from $95.00 to $95.59. The total for the sale came in right at $5 million. Adobe operates as a diversified software company worldwide. Its Digital Media segment provides tools and solutions that enable individuals, small and medium businesses and enterprises to create, publish, promote and monetize their digital content. The shares closed most recently at $96.79.

American Capital Agency

American Capital Agency Corp. (NASDAQ: AGNC) had a total of four executives selling shares this week, and they surrendered a huge number of shares. Their 686,431 shares went for $19.55 apiece. The total for the sales came to $13,416,838. The company operates as a real estate investment trust (REIT) in the United States. It invests in residential mortgage pass-through securities and collateralized mortgage obligations for which the principal and interest payments are guaranteed by government-sponsored enterprise or by the United States government agency. It funds its investments primarily through short-term borrowings structured as repurchase agreements. The stock ended the week at $19.24 a share.

Sun Communities

The CEO at Sun Communities Inc. (NYSE: SUI) parted with some shares this past week as well. Gary Shiffman sold a total of 115,521 shares at prices that ranged from $75.58 to $76.56 per share. The total for the sale came in right at $9 million. The company also operates as a REIT. It owns, operates and develops manufactured housing communities in the midwestern, southern and southeastern United States. As of April 1, 2011, it owned and operated a portfolio of 136 communities comprising approximately 47,600 developed sites. The shares closed trading on Friday at $77.54, so here too some cash seems to be left on the table.

And Others

These companies also reported insider selling last week: AthenaHealth Inc. (NASDAQ: ATHN), Exco Resources Inc. (NYSE: XCO), Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. (NYSE: JEC), Medtronic PLC (NYSE: MDT), New Relic Inc. (NYSE: NEWR) and Occidental Petroleum Corp. (NYSE: OXY).

As we noted, sellers swamped the buyers this week, and with the markets recouping the Brexit losses and trading once again close to all-time highs, it should come as no surprise. Volumes should taper when earnings reports start to come out next week.

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