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Did Sonoco Products Company (NYSE:SON) Insiders Sell Shares?

Simply Wall St

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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 shareholders might well want to know whether insiders have been buying or selling shares in Sonoco Products Company ( NYSE:SON ).

Do Insider Transactions Matter?

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

We don't think shareholders should simply follow insider transactions. 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'.

Check out our latest analysis for Sonoco Products

The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At Sonoco Products

Over the last year, we can see that the biggest insider sale was by the , Allan McLeland, for US$419k worth of shares, at about US$54.00 per share. That means that even when the share price was below the current price of US$66.12, an insider wanted to cash in some shares. We generally consider it a negative if insiders have been selling on market, especially if they did so below the current price, because it implies that they considered a lower price to be reasonable. However, while insider selling is sometimes discouraging, it's only a weak signal. We note that the biggest single sale was only 34.4% of Allan McLeland's holding.

We note that in the last year insiders divested 17395 shares for a total of US$995k. Sonoco Products insiders didn't buy any shares over the last year. You can see the insider transactions (by individuals) over the last year depicted in the chart below. By clicking on the graph below, you can see the precise details of each insider transaction!

NYSE:SON Recent Insider Trading, July 5th 2019

I will like Sonoco Products better if I see some big insider buys. While we wait, check out this free list of growing companies with considerable, recent, insider buying.

Sonoco Products Insiders Are Selling The Stock

The last three months saw significant insider selling at Sonoco Products. In total, insiders sold US$445k 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.

Does Sonoco Products Boast High Insider Ownership?

For a common shareholder, it is worth checking how many shares are held by company insiders. A high insider ownership often makes company leadership more mindful of shareholder interests. It's great to see that Sonoco Products insiders own 1.9% of the company, worth about US$128m. This kind of significant ownership by insiders does generally increase the chance that the company is run in the interest of all shareholders.

So What Do The Sonoco Products Insider Transactions Indicate?

Insiders sold Sonoco Products shares recently, but they didn't buy any. And there weren't any purchases to give us comfort, over the last year. But it is good to see that Sonoco Products is growing earnings. The company boasts high insider ownership, but we're a little hesitant, given the history of share sales. Of course, the future is what matters most . So if you are interested in Sonoco Products, you should check out this free report on analyst forecasts for the company .

Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies.

For the purposes of this article, insiders are those individuals who report their transactions to the relevant regulatory body.

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.