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U.S. Insider Trading Activity on 1/17/2020

An insider trade occurs when an individual that has non-public information about a company buys or sells shares of that company's stock. Examples of people who would be considered insiders include a company's executive officers, its board of directors, and its major shareholders. Tracking a company's insider trades is a metric that can be used to identify the direction that the company's executives believe that the company is headed. For example, if many insiders purchase more shares of a company, they may think that the company will have strong future earnings and that the share price will increase in the near future. What you need to know about insider trading.

CompanyInsider NameBuy/SellShares Bought/SoldTotal TransactionShares Held After TransactionTransaction DateActions
Adaptive Biotechnologies Corporation
Harlan S Robins (Insider)Sell3,700$103,452.00 74,3791/17/2020  
Adaptive Biotechnologies Corporation
Harlan S Robins (Insider)Sell3,700$109,224.00 74,3791/15/2020  
Albemarle Co. logo
Albemarle Co.
Scott Tozier (CFO)Sell14,500$1,161,885.00 66,9251/15/2020  
Alector Inc
Robert Paul (Insider)Sell10,000$186,700.00 273,7191/15/2020  
Alphatec Holdings Inc logo
Alphatec Holdings Inc
Craig E Hunsaker (EVP)Sell32,000$248,000.00 794,9481/15/2020  
Alteryx Inc logo
Alteryx Inc
Christopher M. Lal (Insider)Sell9,770$1,212,457.001/15/2020  
ANGI Homeservices Inc logo
ANGI Homeservices Inc
Bowman Angela R Hicks (Director)Sell10,000$92,300.00 411,0791/15/2020  
Apollo Commercial Real Est. Finance Inc logo
Apollo Commercial Real Est. Finance Inc
Stuart Rothstein (CEO)Sell50,000$916,500.001/15/2020  
Apollo Global Management LLC logo
Apollo Global Management LLC
Tiger Global Management Llc (Major Shareholder)Sell3,750,000$183,975,000.001/14/2020  
AppFolio Inc logo
AppFolio Inc
William R Rauth III (Director)Sell10,112$1,236,192.00 20,0001/15/2020  
AptarGroup, Inc. logo
AptarGroup, Inc.
George L Fotiades (Director)Sell19,000$2,216,540.00 22,9971/15/2020  
Ark Restaurants Corp
Michael Lawrence Weinstein (CEO)Sell2,000$45,000.001/16/2020  
AtriCure Inc. logo
AtriCure Inc.
Douglas J Seith (COO)Sell25,471$916,956.00 106,2721/16/2020  
AtriCure Inc. logo
AtriCure Inc.
M. Andrew Wade (CFO)Sell10,000$360,000.00 155,1201/16/2020  
AtriCure Inc. logo
AtriCure Inc.
Mark A Collar (Director)Sell4,000$140,080.00 77,1061/15/2020  
Axonics Modulation Technologies Inc
Raymond W Cohen (CEO)Sell10,000$319,800.00 618,3911/13/2020  
BioDelivery Sciences International, Inc. logo
BioDelivery Sciences International, Inc.
Mary Theresa Coelho (Insider)Sell42,018$251,267.64 18,3331/16/2020  
BioMarin Pharmaceutical Inc. logo
BioMarin Pharmaceutical Inc.
Jean Jacques Bienaime (CEO)Sell8,000$703,600.00 335,5301/14/2020  
Blackline Inc logo
Blackline Inc
Morgan Karole Prager (Insider)Sell35,870$2,153,276.10 59,0281/16/2020  
Blackline Inc logo
Blackline Inc
Mark Partin (CFO)Sell20,000$1,200,600.00 73,4491/16/2020  
BlackRock, Inc. logo
BlackRock, Inc.
J. Richard Kushel (Director)Sell2,276$1,218,137.961/16/2020  
Booz Allen Hamilton Holding Co. logo
Booz Allen Hamilton Holding Co.
Gary D. Labovich (EVP)Sell8,329$658,240.871/15/2020  
BridgeBio Pharma
Charles J. Homcy (Chairman)Sell10,000$350,000.001/14/2020  
Brixmor Property Group Inc logo
Brixmor Property Group Inc
Steven F. Siegel (Insider)Sell7,500$153,900.001/15/2020  
Broadcom Inc logo
Broadcom Inc
Hock E. Tan (CEO)Sell73,646$22,341,250.561/15/2020  
Cadence Design Systems Inc logo
Cadence Design Systems Inc
Mark Adams (Director)Sell3,250$234,552.50 29,0891/15/2020  
Cadence Design Systems Inc logo
Cadence Design Systems Inc
Lip Bu Tan (CEO)Sell50,000$3,608,500.00 898,2721/15/2020  
CareDx Inc logo
CareDx Inc
Peter Maag (CEO)Sell10,000$231,300.00 429,8141/15/2020  
CarGurus Inc logo
CarGurus Inc
Langley Steinert (CEO)Sell36,010$1,301,401.40 1,984,1091/15/2020  
CDW logo
Robert F Kirby (Insider)Sell1,300$187,057.00 27,2701/15/2020  
Ciena Co. logo
Ciena Co.
Stephen B. Alexander (SVP)Sell2,500$104,550.001/15/2020  
Ciena Co. logo
Ciena Co.
Andrew C. Petrik (VP)Sell2,000$83,640.001/15/2020  
Codexis, Inc. logo
Codexis, Inc.
Thomas R Baruch (Director)Sell10,000$186,800.00 63,0401/15/2020  
Coherus Biosciences Inc logo
Coherus Biosciences Inc
Jean-Frederic Viret (CFO)Sell6,318$125,412.301/15/2020  
Corelogic Inc logo
Corelogic Inc
Barry M Sando (Director)Sell3,750$171,900.00 142,1661/15/2020  
Credit Acceptance Corp. logo
Credit Acceptance Corp.
Prescott General Partners Llc (Insider)Sell10,000$4,448,500.001/15/2020  
Credit Acceptance Corp. logo
Credit Acceptance Corp.
Prescott General Partners Llc (Insider)Sell15,000$6,751,050.001/17/2020  
Crowdstrike Holdings Inc
Colin Black (COO)Sell25,000$1,500,000.00 25,7351/14/2020  
CVS Health Corp logo
CVS Health Corp
Larry J Merlo (CEO)Sell266,476$19,929,740.04 703,4971/15/2020  
Cytokinetics, Inc. logo
Cytokinetics, Inc.
Robert I Blum (CEO)Sell4,950$64,152.00 224,1071/15/2020  
Darden Restaurants, Inc. logo
Darden Restaurants, Inc.
Douglas J Milanes (SVP)Sell791$89,636.12 6,0021/16/2020  
Dave & Buster's Entertainment Inc logo
Dave & Buster's Entertainment Inc
Margo Lynn Manning (COO)Sell8,000$376,000.00 21,9601/17/2020  
Deciphera Pharmaceuticals Inc logo
Deciphera Pharmaceuticals Inc
Christopher John Morl (Insider)Sell12,023$784,260.29 12,0231/15/2020  
Dell Inc. logo
Dell Inc.
Rory P Read (Insider)Sell70,080$3,522,220.80 39,5281/14/2020  
Dell Inc. logo
Dell Inc.
Thomas W Sweet (CFO)Sell2,401$121,850.75 31,2901/14/2020  
DPW Holdings Inc logo
DPW Holdings Inc
Ault & Company, Inc. (Insider)Buy660,667$739,947.04 666,9451/15/2020  
Emergent Biosolutions Inc logo
Emergent Biosolutions Inc
Zsolt Harsanyi (Director)Sell3,435$188,925.00 36,2731/16/2020  
Envestnet Inc logo
Envestnet Inc
Peter D'arrigo (CFO)Sell5,000$371,250.00 56,8401/15/2020  
Equinix Inc logo
Equinix Inc
Karl Strohmeyer (Insider)Sell6,055$3,587,708.60 3,6851/16/2020  
Equinix Inc logo
Equinix Inc
Keith D Taylor (CFO)Sell3,383$2,003,683.24 28,4301/16/2020  
Equinix Inc logo
Equinix Inc
Charles J Meyers (CEO)Sell5,562$3,295,651.86 8,5671/16/2020  
Equinix Inc logo
Equinix Inc
Camp Peter Van (Director)Sell1,459$864,151.11 3,6281/16/2020  
Etsy Inc logo
Etsy Inc
Goyal Kruti Patel (Insider)Sell3,400$170,000.00 19,5741/15/2020  
Etsy Inc logo
Etsy Inc
Josh Silverman (CEO)Sell39,924$1,996,200.001/15/2020  
Etsy Inc logo
Etsy Inc
Michael T Fisher (CTO)Sell19,831$991,550.00 39,0711/15/2020  
Everbridge Inc logo
Everbridge Inc
Patrick Brickley (CFO)Sell3,125$265,062.501/14/2020  
EXACT Sciences Co. logo
EXACT Sciences Co.
G Bradley Cole (Insider)Sell10,000$903,000.001/16/2020  
Extra Space Storage, Inc. logo
Extra Space Storage, Inc.
James Overturf (CMO)Sell833$90,946.94 61,2961/15/2020  
Facebook, Inc. logo
Facebook, Inc.
Jennifer Newstead (VP)Sell260$57,683.60 1,0461/14/2020  
Fastly Inc
Adriel G Lares (CFO)Sell4,000$90,160.00 73,8971/15/2020  
Fastly Inc
Artur Bergman (CEO)Sell26,759$602,612.68 329,6481/15/2020  
Fiserv Inc logo
Fiserv Inc
Jeffery W Yabuki (CEO)Sell25,000$2,964,500.00 443,2331/15/2020  
Five9 Inc logo
Five9 Inc
Barry Zwarenstein (CFO)Sell8,500$618,715.00 93,5081/15/2020  
Forescout Technologies Inc logo
Forescout Technologies Inc
Christopher Harms (CFO)Sell9,815$331,747.00 155,5681/15/2020  
Forty Seven Inc logo
Forty Seven Inc
Ravindra Majeti (Director)Sell25,000$908,750.00 1,087,4111/15/2020  
Godaddy Inc logo
Godaddy Inc
Brian Sharples (Director)Sell850$61,871.50 9,2481/15/2020  
Goosehead Insurance Inc logo
Goosehead Insurance Inc
Robyn Mary Elizabeth Jones (Major Shareholder)Sell21,026$948,272.60 747,8901/15/2020  
GW Pharmaceuticals PLC- logo
GW Pharmaceuticals PLC-
Geoffrey W Dr Guy (Chairman)Sell900,000$8,496,000.00 7,421,5211/15/2020  
Helios Technologies
Tricia L Fulton (CFO)Sell1,500$72,000.00 54,3721/16/2020  
Incyte Co. logo
Incyte Co.
Paula J Swain (EVP)Sell2,500$202,800.00 44,1121/15/2020  
Insignia Systems, Inc.
Fund Lp Funicular (Major Shareholder)Buy40,949$32,349.71 1,215,4531/15/2020  
Intercontinental Exchange Inc logo
Intercontinental Exchange Inc
Charles R Crisp (Director)Sell2,908$277,888.48 51,2011/15/2020  
International Flavors & Fragrances Inc logo
International Flavors & Fragrances Inc
Nicolas Mirzayantz (Insider)Sell979$127,318.95 30,7091/16/2020  
Irhythm Technologies Inc logo
Irhythm Technologies Inc
Kevin M King (CEO)Sell39,791$3,183,280.00 245,0251/14/2020  
Irhythm Technologies Inc logo
Irhythm Technologies Inc
Matthew C Garrett (CFO)Sell4,954$396,320.00 21,9301/14/2020  
Iridium Communications Inc logo
Iridium Communications Inc
Matthew J Desch (CEO)Sell20,639$578,717.56 977,3091/16/2020  
Jabil Inc logo
Jabil Inc
Sergio Cadavid (SVP)Sell610$26,840.001/16/2020  
Jabil Inc logo
Jabil Inc
Michael J. Loparco (CEO)Sell3,000$129,000.001/14/2020  
Jack in the Box Inc. logo
Jack in the Box Inc.
Leonard A Comma (CEO)Sell6,204$502,524.00 173,0171/16/2020  
Jack in the Box Inc. logo
Jack in the Box Inc.
Phillip H Rudolph (EVP)Sell8,390$671,200.00 78,0051/15/2020  
Kadant Inc. logo
Kadant Inc.
Jonathan W Painter (Chairman)Sell5,208$580,223.28 31,7561/17/2020  
Kadant Inc. logo
Kadant Inc.
Jonathan W Painter (Chairman)Sell7,200$782,640.00 31,7561/15/2020  
LCI Industries logo
LCI Industries
David A Reed (Director)Sell10,000$1,100,400.001/16/2020  
Lennar Co. logo
Lennar Co.
David M Collins (Insider)Sell10,000$625,400.00 116,6311/15/2020  
Levi Strauss & Co.
Elizabeth H. Eisenhardt (major shareholder)Sell4,086$77,715.72 11,1981/15/2020  
LiveRamp Holdings
Clark M Kokich (Director)Sell1,000$43,180.00 67,4271/15/2020  
LYFT Inc logo
Kristin Sverchek (General Counsel)Sell1,500$71,265.001/14/2020  
Mastercard Inc logo
Mastercard Inc
Foundation Mastercard (Major Shareholder)Sell38,536$12,217,068.08 111,833,3911/16/2020  
Mastercard Inc logo
Mastercard Inc
Foundation Mastercard (Major Shareholder)Sell38,536$12,052,134.00 111,833,3911/14/2020  
Materion Corp logo
Materion Corp
Craig S Shular (Director)Sell4,637$281,234.05 4,6371/15/2020  
Maxim Integrated Products Inc. logo
Maxim Integrated Products Inc.
Mary Ann Wright (Director)Sell1,345$82,919.251/15/2020  
Roxanne Oulman (CFO)Sell34,132$1,076,523.28 490,8681/15/2020  
Medley Capital Corp logo
Medley Capital Corp
Fortress Investment Group Llc (Major Shareholder)Sell43,924$97,072.041/17/2020  
Medley Capital Corp logo
Medley Capital Corp
Fortress Investment Group Llc (Major Shareholder)Sell52,669$117,978.561/15/2020  
Momenta Pharmaceuticals, Inc. logo
Momenta Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Elizabeth Stoner (Director)Sell4,236$105,900.00 39,7451/14/2020  
Momenta Pharmaceuticals, Inc. logo
Momenta Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Jo Ann Beltramello (Insider)Sell122,589$2,871,034.38 46,0781/14/2020  
MSC Industrial Direct Co Inc logo
MSC Industrial Direct Co Inc
Charles Bonomo (VP)Sell24,211$1,876,352.501/14/2020  
Myovant Sciences Ltd logo
Myovant Sciences Ltd
Kim Sablich (Insider)Sell4,840$67,953.60 59,6901/15/2020  
NetApp Inc. logo
NetApp Inc.
Henri P Richard (EVP)Sell2,500$160,500.00 143,8551/15/2020  
Nlight Inc logo
Nlight Inc
Scott H Keeney (CEO)Sell5,000$105,800.00 304,1621/15/2020  
Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. logo
Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd.
Rio Frank J Del (CEO)Sell4,000$230,000.00 392,0941/15/2020  
Novanta Inc logo
Novanta Inc
Robert Buckley (CFO)Sell5,260$498,753.20 163,3211/15/2020  
Okta Inc logo
Okta Inc
Christopher K. Kramer (CAO)Sell2,971$386,230.001/15/2020  
ON Semiconductor Corp logo
ON Semiconductor Corp
William A Schromm (COO)Sell9,513$242,581.50 676,9001/14/2020  
Patrick Industries, Inc. logo
Patrick Industries, Inc.
Todd M Cleveland (Chairman)Sell10,000$555,400.00 599,0531/14/2020  
PDC Energy Inc logo
PDC Energy Inc
Anthony J Crisafio (Director)Sell3,850$95,595.50 18,2801/15/2020  
PennyMac Financial Services Inc logo
PennyMac Financial Services Inc
Joseph F. Mazzella (Director)Sell18,000$611,280.001/15/2020  
Pluralsight Inc logo
Pluralsight Inc
Nate Walkingshaw (Insider)Sell6,000$117,000.00 200,0901/15/2020  
PriceSmart, Inc. logo
PriceSmart, Inc.
Robert E Price (Director)Sell10,000$648,000.00 801/15/2020  
PROS Holdings, Inc. logo
PROS Holdings, Inc.
Greg Petersen (Director)Sell1,743$118,663.44 108,0991/16/2020  
Public Service Enterprise Group Inc. logo
Public Service Enterprise Group Inc.
Daniel J Cregg (CFO)Sell625$36,618.75 54,6481/15/2020  
Qualys Inc logo
Qualys Inc
Melissa B Fisher (CFO)Sell450$37,831.50 184,9181/15/2020  
Ra Pharmaceuticals Inc logo
Ra Pharmaceuticals Inc
Ramin Farzaneh-Far (Insider)Sell10,595$497,435.25 8,5211/15/2020  
Redfin Corp logo
Redfin Corp
Adam Wiener (Insider)Sell25,000$580,000.00 197,8421/15/2020  
Republic Services, Inc. logo
Republic Services, Inc.
Brian A Goebel (CAO)Sell2,000$183,560.00 8,1861/14/2020  
RF Industries, Ltd.
Howard F Hill (Director)Sell28,879$174,140.37 256,3701/14/2020  
Roku Inc logo
Roku Inc
Stephen H Kay (SVP)Sell10,000$1,338,600.00 89,0041/14/2020  
RumbleON, Inc. logo
RumbleON, Inc.
Steven R Berrard (CFO)Buy200,000$114,000.00 2,170,0001/14/2020  
Safehold Inc logo
Safehold Inc
Istar Inc. (Major Shareholder)Buy14,900$633,399.00 31,211,5021/17/2020  
Safehold Inc logo
Safehold Inc
Istar Inc. (Major Shareholder)Buy15,000$622,500.00 31,211,5021/15/2020  
Sailpoint Technologies Holdings Inc logo
Sailpoint Technologies Holdings Inc
Mark D Mcclain (CEO)Sell20,000$503,400.00 1,335,6391/15/2020  
salesforce.com, inc. logo
salesforce.com, inc.
Craig Conway (Director)Sell225$40,878.00 10,1011/15/2020  
salesforce.com, inc. logo
salesforce.com, inc.
Marc Benioff (CEO)Sell10,000$1,819,600.001/16/2020  
salesforce.com, inc. logo
salesforce.com, inc.
Mark J Hawkins (CFO)Sell876$159,151.68 19,9131/15/2020  
salesforce.com, inc. logo
salesforce.com, inc.
Amy E Weaver (General Counsel)Sell10,864$1,981,702.24 47,0341/15/2020  
Seagate Technology PLC logo
Seagate Technology PLC
Stephen J Luczo (Director)Sell5,000$302,700.001/15/2020  
Shockwave Medical Inc
Antoine Papiernik (Director)Sell58,333$2,511,818.981/15/2020  
Shockwave Medical Inc
Sofinnova Capital Vii Fcpr (Major Shareholder)Sell58,747$2,537,870.401/14/2020  
SI-Bone Inc
Jeffrey W. Dunn (CEO)Sell1,743$37,143.331/15/2020  
SI-Bone Inc
W Carlton Reckling (CMO)Sell5,000$106,100.00 49,1701/15/2020  
SI-Bone Inc
Michael A Pisetsky (Insider)Sell3,000$65,160.00 53,0131/14/2020  
SiteOne Landscape Supply Inc logo
SiteOne Landscape Supply Inc
L Briley Brisendine Jr (EVP)Sell1,800$169,236.00 20,1361/15/2020  
Stewart Butterfield (CEO)Sell2,500$56,600.00 238,6551/15/2020  
Cal Henderson (CTO)Sell1,500$34,005.001/15/2020  
Southern Co logo
Southern Co
Anthony L Wilson (CEO)Sell61,018$3,966,170.00 90,2081/15/2020  
Sprott Focus Trust
W Whitney George (Portfolio Manager)Buy40,182$298,552.26 6,085,0001/15/2020  
Square, Inc. logo
Square, Inc.
Alyssa Henry (Insider)Sell20,000$1,403,400.00 415,6041/15/2020  
Stitch Fix Inc logo
Stitch Fix Inc
Mike C Smith (COO)Sell15,000$370,350.00 102,3131/15/2020  
Stitch Fix Inc logo
Stitch Fix Inc
Marka Hansen (Director)Sell2,500$62,500.00 2,5001/14/2020  
Stitch Fix Inc logo
Stitch Fix Inc
Katrina Lake (CEO)Sell36,643$917,540.72 54,0281/17/2020  
Stitch Fix Inc logo
Stitch Fix Inc
Katrina Lake (CEO)Sell36,641$896,971.68 54,0281/15/2020  
Stitch Fix Inc logo
Stitch Fix Inc
Scott Darling (Insider)Sell1,000$25,000.00 98,4831/14/2020  
Sunrun Inc logo
Sunrun Inc
Robert Patrick Jr. Komin (CFO)Sell13,387$207,498.501/14/2020  
Sunrun Inc logo
Sunrun Inc
Robert Patrick Jr. Komin (CFO)Sell25,121$407,713.831/16/2020  
Sunrun Inc logo
Sunrun Inc
Edward Harris Fenster (Chairman)Sell50,000$796,000.001/16/2020  
SVMK Inc logo
Thomas E. Hale (President)Sell76,453$1,531,353.591/15/2020  
SVMK Inc logo
Erika H. James (Director)Sell35,000$701,050.001/14/2020  
SVMK Inc logo
Lora D. Blum (SVP)Sell42,865$857,728.651/15/2020  
SYNNEX Co. logo
Kevin M Murai (Director)Sell5,800$868,550.00 30,7661/14/2020  
TechTarget Inc logo
TechTarget Inc
Greg Strakosch (Chairman)Sell40,000$1,002,400.00 417,4781/15/2020  
Trecora Resources logo
Trecora Resources
Nicholas Carter (Director)Sell5,000$35,650.00 533,5901/15/2020  
Tricida Inc logo
Tricida Inc
Gerrit Klaerner (CEO)Sell4,000$141,040.00 571,3211/15/2020  
Turning Point Therapeutics
Jingrong Jean Cui (Insider)Sell11,500$610,880.00 1,301,2981/15/2020  
Twitter Inc logo
Twitter Inc
Ned D. Segal (CFO)Sell8,000$261,520.001/14/2020  
Tyson Foods, Inc. logo
Tyson Foods, Inc.
Noel W. White (CEO)Sell17,417$1,589,997.931/15/2020  
Uber Technologies Inc logo
Uber Technologies Inc
Thuan Pham (CTO)Sell30,000$1,050,000.00 4,601,3301/14/2020  
Uniqure NV logo
Uniqure NV
Alexander Edward Kuta III (VP)Sell4,000$275,880.00 45,5781/15/2020  
Veritex Holdings Inc logo
Veritex Holdings Inc
Manuel J Mehos (Director)Sell7,400$207,422.00 428,9931/15/2020  
Vivint Solar Inc logo
Vivint Solar Inc
Todd R Pedersen (Director)Sell50,000$413,000.001/15/2020  
Vornado Realty Trust logo
Vornado Realty Trust
Barry Langer (EVP)Sell4,255$283,425.55 16,2211/14/2020  
Voya Prime Rate Trust
Saba Capital Management, L.P. (Major Shareholder)Buy55,778$283,910.021/15/2020  
Waste Management, Inc. logo
Waste Management, Inc.
Frank M Clark (Director)Sell267$31,957.23 32,3961/17/2020  
Wayfair Inc logo
Wayfair Inc
Steve Oblak (Insider)Sell939$99,684.24 151,9011/16/2020  
Wayfair Inc logo
Wayfair Inc
Michael D Fleisher (CFO)Sell4,726$501,759.42 156,4951/16/2020  
Western Digital Corp logo
Western Digital Corp
Michael D Cordano (COO)Sell2,034$142,685.10 261,8181/14/2020  
Workday Inc logo
Workday Inc
James Bozzini (COO)Sell4,293$770,378.851/15/2020  
Workday Inc logo
Workday Inc
Aneel Bhusri (CEO)Sell5,714$1,025,434.441/15/2020  
Workday Inc logo
Workday Inc
David A Duffield (Director)Sell210$37,690.801/15/2020  
Workday Inc logo
Workday Inc
Robynne Sisco (CFO)Sell10,236$1,833,574.681/15/2020  
Workday Inc logo
Workday Inc
Gomez Luciano Fernandez (Insider)Sell6,921$1,239,897.151/15/2020  
Yelp Inc logo
Yelp Inc
Laurence Wilson (Insider)Sell19,043$700,782.40 160,0821/15/2020  
Yext Inc logo
Yext Inc
Brian Distelburger (President)Sell10,000$153,300.00 3,768,7651/14/2020  
Zoetis Inc logo
Zoetis Inc
Roman Trawicki (EVP)Sell2,199$302,164.591/15/2020  
Zoom Video Communications Inc
Eric S Yuan (CEO)Sell70,143$5,161,121.94 70,1431/14/2020  
Zynga Inc logo
Zynga Inc
Jeffrey Miles Ryan (Insider)Sell7,789$53,276.76 19,2041/15/2020  
Zynga Inc logo
Zynga Inc
James Gerard Griffin (CFO)Sell52,899$362,358.15 611,3161/16/2020  
Zynga Inc logo
Zynga Inc
Ellen F Siminoff (Director)Sell5,000$34,250.00 122,4781/15/2020  
Insider Trading - What You Need to Know

We all like having inside information. But much of the time, what’s passed off as inside information, is just idle gossip. In other cases, we know that having inside information is really a way for an organization to profit from delivering what is viewed as premium content. Still, the basic idea behind inside information is that you are getting information that the general public does not have.

When it comes to investing, this practice of acting on inside information is known as insider trading. In recent years, insider trading may bring to mind a celebrity such as Martha Stewart. Going back to the 1980s, one of the most popular movies of the decade, Wall Street, is at its core a movie that highlights the dangers of insider trading.

The idea of price fixing, athletic competitions being fixed, even athletes using performance-enhancing drugs spark strong emotions and opinions in our society. That’s why it may surprise you to know that insider trading – in some cases, is perfectly legal.

This article will provide a definition of insider trading, who constitutes an insider, why inside trading is harmful, and when – and under what conditions - insider trading can be legal.

What is insider trading?

Insider trading is the action of buying or selling (“trading”) a security based on material information that is not available to the public. Although generally assumed to be illegal, there are times when insider trading can be legal. In these cases, the trades have to be properly disclosed to the SEC (more on that below).

For insider trading to be illegal, essentially three conditions have to be met:

  1. Information has to be passed along by an insider.
  2. That information has to be acted upon (traded) by the individual(s) receiving the inside information.
  3. The trading activity has to occur before the inside information becomes available to the general public.

Who is an insider?

If your friend’s girlfriend’s uncle passes along a “hot tip” that they received, your first question – that is if you thought the tip was credible at all – might be who’s your source? That is a critical distinction for insider trading. To constitute insider trading, the private or confidential information being passed along must be issued by an insider.

An insider is defined as someone who meets one of two conditions:

  1. They are an individual who has access to valuable non-pubic information about a corporation. Although this includes a company’s directors and high-level executives, it has been expanded in recent years to include virtually any employee of a company. In this case, the individual is presumed to have a fiduciary interest in the company and therefore should put the company’s interests ahead of their own.
  2. They have an ownership stake in the company’s stock that equals over 10% of that company’s equity.

However, in the case of insider trading, the definition of “insider” expands to include any individual who buys or sells shares of a security based on inside information material to that security’s price that is not public knowledge. In recent history, one of the more recognizable cases of insider trading involved Martha Stewart, who was convicted of insider trading for selling shares based on a tip that she received from a broker at Merrill Lynch (someone who met condition #1 above). And in 2018, a professional football player Mychal Kendricks was indicted for insider trading after acting upon information he received from an acquaintance who was a broker with Goldman Sachs. 

This brings up a critical point to understand insider trading. The SEC makes no distinction between the "tipper" and the "tipee". In the two instances above, neither Stewart nor Kendricks worked for the company or an investment firm. In the case of Stewart, she was an existing shareholder. In the case of Kendricks, he entered and exited trades based on the information he received. However, in both cases, they were indicted for insider trading because they acted on the information they received before the information was available to the public.

So getting back to our example, if your friend’s girlfriends uncle was the Vice President of the company that the “hot tip” is based on, you should tread very carefully before deciding to take action. However, simply being informed of the tip does not constitute an illegal activity.

Can someone be guilty of insider trading for idle conversation?

For an individual to be guilty of insider trading do they have to have intent? A Supreme Court ruling, Dirks v. SEC cites “the mere disclosure of material, nonpublic information, by itself, does not necessarily constitute a breach of an insider’s fiduciary duties.” Another case, SEC v Switzer, upheld this ruling. In that case, a former college football coach, Barry Switzer, overheard the former CEO of Texas International discussing nonpublic, material information with his wife while at a high school track meets and act upon that information. The case went to trial and the Supreme Court ruled that the CEO did not breach his fiduciary duties.

However, this is still considered a high standard to be met. For example, in the Switzer case, the CEO was talking to his wife in what he believed to be a private conversation. However, if he had been talking directly to Switzer, even if he had no reason to believe his information would be acted upon, he could have been guilty of insider trading. 

Why is insider trading harmful?

For companies, insider trading is a violation of an insider’s fiduciary duty. In their fiduciary role, they are supposed to put their client’s (in this case, their company’s) interests ahead of their own. By trading on inside information, particularly when it involves selling shares that can affect a company’s stock price; they are putting their own interests, or the interests of other, select individuals, ahead of the company.

A second reason is one that affects both retail and individual investors and that is the notion that insider trading violates the principle of transparency. In a properly functioning market, all investors have access to the same information and can make their investment decisions accordingly. The very nature of insider trading violates transparency because the intention is to give a select few investors a material advantage over the vast majority of investors. If allowed to proceed unpunished, individual investors would quickly lose confidence in the market and could easily choose not to participate in the market.

Insider trading versus inside information

The word “Insider” has become a, perhaps overused, marketing term that many companies, particularly content providers, use as a way to increase their subscriber base for paid content. The idea is that by becoming an “insider”, subscribers have access to information that non-subscribers do not. This, however, is not illegal because all consumers have the same access to the information; it’s just a question of whether or not they are willing to pay for it.

In the specific context of insider trading, the key distinction between insider trading and insider information is the idea of taking action on the information. For example, if an executive of a company knows that their company is going to buy another company and they pass that information along to family and friends that is not, by itself, insider trading. However, it becomes insider trading as soon as anyone acts upon that information to buy or sell the company’s stock in advance of that announcement becoming public information. Using the same logic, if someone who became privy to that information initiates their trade after the information goes public, they are not guilty of insider trading. So the key difference between insider trading and inside information is the word “trading”.

When is insider trading legal?

There are times when insider trading is legal. Insiders (as defined above) can, and frequently do, trade stock in their own company. These trades, however, are highly restricted and must meet certain conditions. The insiders conducting the trade must report the trade to the SEC within two business days of when the trade occurred. So if an insider sells 5,000 shares on a Monday, assuming there is no Holiday in between, they would have to report this sale by Wednesday. If the trade is done on a Friday, they would have to report it by the following Tuesday. The SEC has a specific form, called Form 4, that will detail the trade and make it public record. The insider must also file a Form 14a, that lists all of the company’s directors and officers along with any share interest they may have.

Obviously, knowledge of whether a company was buying or selling a large number of shares would be valuable to an individual investor. This is particularly true in the case that shares of a company are being purchased. SEC rules prevent insiders from trading company stock within any six-month period, so if an insider is buying their company’s stock an individual investor can reasonably surmise that the company’s growth prospects are good.

Information on insider trading activity is available on many financial websites; however, in some cases, the filings do not appear right away. For the most current information, investors can go to the SEC’s EDGAR (Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis, and Retrieval) database. You will first have to search the database for a company’s CIK number, and then you can find any individual filings related to that company.

How is legal and illegal insider trading different?

The key distinction between insider trading is legal and illegal is one of intent. In the case of legal insider trading, a company is tipping the public to their actions by way of an SEC filing that is available for public scrutiny. Since a company may have many insiders, sometimes numbering in the hundreds, the insider information may paint a contradictory picture. In this case, individual investors will still have to rely on fundamental analysis or technical analysis to discern price movement.

In the case of illegal insider trading, the intent is to act on inside information before the public has knowledge of it. In this way, a select few “insiders” can profit from the information.

The bottom line on insider trading

Is it illegal or just idle gossip? Is the information from a credible source with access to private company information, or is it simply speculation based on publicly available information? These are two questions that are at the heart of insider trading. The practice of allowing a select few groups of investors to profit by letting them buy or sell a stock or security based on material information that is not available to the general public is, and always be considered, illegal in the eyes of the Securities & Exchange Commission. For this reason, many companies make even the lowest level employees sign non-disclosure agreements that can lead to termination, or at least censure if they knowingly pass along material information about the company to outside sources.

Insider trading requires access to material information that is traded upon before that information is available to the public. To be guilty of insider trading, such as the case of Martha Stewart, an individual does not have to be an employee of the company or an investment firm with access to the knowledge (i.e. the tipper). Even the person who receives the tip can be indicted and convicted if they took action that allowed them to profit from the information. However, just being presented with information does not make an individual guilty of insider trading.

Although generally assumed to be illegal in all cases, insider trading has been around for decades, and in some cases is entirely legal. If properly disclosed, knowledge of insider trading activity can be a tremendous benefit to institutional and retail investors. In fact, some analysts and investment brokers use insider trading information to supplement their fundamental analysis or technical analysis of a company.


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