Investing

Insiders Keep Buying as Market Wraps on 2016: Tronic, Six Flags, Virtu Financial, Cesca Therapeutics and More

In a year in which investors had every reason to smile, so did insiders at major companies. Despite all three of the major indexes closing at one point at all-time highs for the first time since 1999, the insider buying was full speed ahead almost all year. This is a bullish sign for investors as we head into 2017.

We cover insider buying each week at 24/7 Wall St., and we like to remind readers that while insider buying is usually a very positive sign, it is not in of itself a reason to run out and buy a stock. Sometimes insiders and 10% owners have stock purchase plans set up at intervals to add to their holdings. That aside, it still remains an overall positive indicator.

Here are some of the companies that reported notable insider buying last week.

Tronc Inc. (NASDAQ: TRNC) had a gigantic buyer recently. Michael Ferro, who is a director, purchased a stunning 2,500,000 shares at $15 apiece. The total for the trade was an incredible $37,500,000. This multiplatform media and marketing solutions company publishes newspapers in the United States, as well as provides a suite of digital marketing services for local, regional and national marketers. Its shares ended trading on Friday at $13.87. Their 52-week trading range is $8.76 to $17.93, and the Wall Street consensus price target is $21.

Six Flags Entertainment Inc. (NYSE: SIX) also recently had a large buyer acquiring more shares of the company. CEO and the President John Duffey bought a total of 25,000 shares of the theme park giant at $59.93 per share. The total for the trade was posted at $1,498,198. The stock closed last Friday at $59.96. The 52-week range for the shares is $45.24 to $62.69. The consensus price target is $62.43.

Virtu Financial Inc. (NASDAQ: VIRT) had a large buyer at the desk last week. TJMT Holdings, an investment vehicle for the founder and Executive Chairman Vincent Viola, bought a 50,000 share block at $15.88 apiece. The total price for the trade was $794,345. The company provides market making and liquidity services to the financial markets worldwide. Shares closed last Friday at $15.95, in a 52 week range of $12.35 to $23.97, and the consensus price target is $16.31.

Cesca Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ: KOOL) had a 10% owner come in with a big-time purchase. Boyalfe bought a total of 6,102,942 shares of the stock a $2.52. The total for the purchase was posted at $6,838, 237. The company develops and manufactures automated blood and bone marrow processing systems that enable the separation, processing and preservation of cell and tissue therapy products. Its stock traded on Friday’s close at $3.45, so a well-timed buy. The 52-week range is $1.60 to $7.39. The consensus price target is $2.

Digimarc Corp. (NASDAQ: DMRC) had a director at the company buying some stock last week. Gary Destefano picked up 21,000 shares at $28.19 apiece. The total for the trade was set at $500,100. The company provides media identification and management solutions to commercial entities and government customers in the United States and internationally. The stock ended last week at $30.00, so another well-timed purchase. The 52-week range is $25.04 to $44.94, and the consensus price target is $44.33.

These companies also reported insider buying last week: Cadiz Inc. (NASDAQ: CDZI), Castle Brands Inc. (NYSE: ROX), Kandi Technolgies Group Inc. (NASDAQ: KNDI), Medley Capital Corp. (NYSE: MCC) and Occidental Petroleum Inc. (NYSE: OXY).

While many of the companies seeing buyers were of the smaller capitalization variety, the mere fact the executives and insiders are buying after such a big year remain bullish. Volume may slow with fourth quarter earnings right around the corner.