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Have Insiders Been Selling CF Industries Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:CF) Shares This Year?

Simply Wall St

We often see insiders buying up shares in companies that perform well over the long term. The flip side of that is that there are more than a few examples of insiders dumping stock prior to a period of weak performance. So we'll take a look at whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in CF Industries Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:CF).

Do Insider Transactions Matter?

It is perfectly legal for company insiders, including board members, to buy and sell stock in a 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 Harvard University study found that 'insider purchases earn abnormal returns of more than 6% per year.

View our latest analysis for CF Industries Holdings

The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At CF Industries Holdings

In the last twelve months, the biggest single sale by an insider was when the insider, Dennis Kelleher, sold US$2.0m worth of shares at a price of US$48.19 per share. That means that even when the share price was slightly below the current price of US$48.91, an insider wanted to cash in some shares. As a general rule we consider it to be discouraging when insiders are selling below the current price, because it suggests they were happy with a lower valuation. While insider selling is not a positive sign, we can't be sure if it does mean insiders think the shares are fully valued, so it's only a weak sign. We note that the biggest single sale was 50% of Dennis Kelleher's holding.

Over the last year, we note insiders sold 48193 shares worth US$2.3m. In the last year CF Industries Holdings insiders didn't buy any company stock. You can see a visual depiction of insider transactions (by individuals) over the last 12 months, below. If you want to know exactly who sold, for how much, and when, simply click on the graph below!

NYSE:CF Recent Insider Trading, October 17th 2019

If you like to buy stocks that insiders are buying, rather than selling, then you might just love this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).

Insiders at CF Industries Holdings Have Sold Stock Recently

Over the last three months, we've seen significant insider selling at CF Industries Holdings. Specifically, insider Dennis Kelleher ditched US$2.0m worth of shares in that time, and we didn't record any purchases whatsoever. This may suggest that some insiders think that the shares are not cheap.

Insider Ownership

Many investors like to check how much of a company is owned by insiders. Usually, the higher the insider ownership, the more likely it is that insiders will be incentivised to build the company for the long term. Insiders own 0.5% of CF Industries Holdings shares, worth about US$56m. This level of insider ownership is good but just short of being particularly stand-out. It certainly does suggest a reasonable degree of alignment.

What Might The Insider Transactions At CF Industries Holdings Tell Us?

An insider sold CF Industries Holdings shares recently, but they didn't buy any. And even if we look to the last year, we didn't see any purchases. Insiders own shares, but we're still pretty cautious, given the history of sales. We're in no rush to buy! Therefore, you should should definitely take a look at this FREE report showing analyst forecasts for CF Industries Holdings.

If you would prefer to check out another company -- one with potentially superior financials -- then do not miss this free list of interesting companies, that have HIGH return on equity 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.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. 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. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.