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Should You Take Comfort From Insider Transactions At Macy's, Inc. (NYSE:M)?

It is not uncommon to see companies perform well in the years after insiders buy shares. Unfortunately, there are also plenty of examples of share prices declining precipitously after insiders have sold shares. So shareholders might well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in Macy's, Inc. (NYSE:M).

What Is Insider Buying?

Most investors know that it is quite permissible for company leaders, such as directors of the board, to buy and sell stock in the company. However, most countries require that the company discloses such transactions to the market.

Insider transactions are not the most important thing when it comes to long-term investing. But equally, we would consider it foolish to ignore insider transactions altogether. For example, a Columbia University study found that 'insiders are more likely to engage in open market purchases of their own company’s stock when the firm is about to reveal new agreements with customers and suppliers'.

Macy's Insider Transactions Over The Last Year

The Lead Independent Director Paul Varga made the biggest insider purchase in the last 12 months. That single transaction was for US$511k worth of shares at a price of US$15.53 each. Although we like to see insider buying, we note that this large purchase was at significantly below the recent price of US$18.83. While it does suggest insiders consider the stock undervalued at lower prices, this transaction doesn't tell us much about what they think of current prices.

Paul Varga bought a total of 39.63k shares over the year at an average price of US$15.41. The chart below shows insider transactions (by companies and individuals) over the last year. If you click on the chart, you can see all the individual transactions, including the share price, individual, and the date!

insider-trading-volumeNYSE:M Insider Trading Volume June 30th 2021

There are plenty of other companies that have insiders buying up shares. You probably do not want to miss this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying.

Macy's Insiders Are Selling The Stock

The last three months saw some Macy's insider selling. Senior VP & Controller Paul Griscom divested only US$26k worth of shares in that time. It's not great to see insider selling, nor the lack of recent buyers. But the amount sold isn't enough for us to put any weight on it.

Does Macy's Boast High Insider Ownership?

Another way to test the alignment between the leaders of a company and other shareholders is to look at how many shares they own. Usually, the higher the insider ownership, the more likely it is that insiders will be incentivised to build the company for the long term. From our data, it seems that Macy's insiders own 0.1% of the company, worth about US$7.2m. Overall, this level of ownership isn't that impressive, but it's certainly better than nothing!

So What Does This Data Suggest About Macy's Insiders?

Our data shows a little more insider selling, but no insider buying, in the last three months. However, the sales are not big enough to concern us at all. On a brighter note, the transactions over the last year are encouraging. The transactions are fine but it'd be more encouraging if Macy's insiders bought more shares in the company. So these insider transactions can help us build a thesis about the stock, but it's also worthwhile knowing the risks facing this company. To assist with this, we've discovered 1 warning sign that you should run your eye over to get a better picture of Macy's.

But note: Macy's may not be the best stock to buy. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies with high ROE and low debt.

For the purposes of this article, insiders are those individuals who report their transactions to the relevant regulatory body. We currently account for open market transactions and private dispositions, but not derivative transactions.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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