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Insider Buying

    Insider Weekends – December 19, 2014

    Welcome to edition 235 of Insider Weekends. The prolific buying by insiders of energy companies lost some steam last week even as oil and energy stocks rebounded sharply along with the rest of the market. With the S&P 500 closing less than 5 points off its all-time high, insider buying also picked up with insiders buying $256.35 million of stock compared to $190.94 million in the week prior. Selling along increased sharply with insiders selling $2.59 billion of stock last week compared to $1.34 billion in the week prior.

    We saw both Carl Icahn and Mark Rachesky add to their positions in diesel engine and truck manufacturer Navistar International (NAV) and we also saw Carl Icahn add to his stake in car rental company Hertz Global Holdings (HTZ). Hertz has had a tough second half of the year following revelations of accounting irregularities that will require the company to restate its results for the last three years. The stock has stayed weak despite a large $2 million purchase by the CEO in late November.

    Sell/Buy Ratio: The insider Sell/Buy ratio is calculated by dividing the total insider sales in a given week by total insider purchases that week. The adjusted ratio for last week increased to 10.1. In other words, insiders sold 10 times as much stock as they purchased. The Sell/Buy ratio this week compares unfavorably with the prior week, when the ratio stood at 7.02. We are calculating an adjusted ratio by removing transactions by funds and companies and trying as best as possible only to retain information about insiders and 10% owners who are not funds or companies.

    Insider Sell Buy Ratio December 19, 2014

    Insider Sell Buy Ratio December 19, 2014

    Note: As mentioned in the first post in this series, certain industries have their preferred metrics such as same store sales for retailers, funds from operations (FFO) for REITs and revenue per available room (RevPAR) for hotels that provide a better basis for comparison than simple valuation metrics. However metrics like Price/Earnings, Price/Sales and Enterprise Value/EBITDA included below should provide a good starting point for analyzing the majority of stocks.

    Notable Insider Buys:

    1. American Homes 4 Rent (AMH): $17.31

    Director B. Wayne Hughes acquired 1,000,000 shares of this real estate investment trust, paying $16.99 per share for a total amount of $16.99 million. These shares were purchased indirectly through trust.

    Mr. Hughes is the billionaire founder of Public Storage (PSA) and retired as the CEO of PSA in 2012. He founded the former manager of American Homes 4 Rent in 2011.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for American Homes 4 Rent here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: N/A Industry P/E: N/A
    P/S: N/A Price/Book: N/A EV/EBITDA: N/A
    Market Cap: $N/A Avg. Daily Volume: N/A 52 Week Range: $15.76 – $18.85

    2. Endurance Specialty Holdings Ltd. (ENH): $58.03

    Chairman & Chief Executive Officer John Charman acquired 150,000 shares of this insurance company, paying $57.32 per share for a total amount of $8.59 million. 100,000 of these shares were purchased indirectly through various entities.

    We mentioned in our last report that the $3.38 million purchase by Mr. Charman last week was the largest purchase we had seen from him since he assumed the role of CEO in May 2013. The purchases this week were significantly larger.

    The company trades for 0.88 times tangible book value.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Endurance Specialty Holdings Ltd. here.

    P/E: 8.67 Forward P/E: 9.9 Industry P/E: N/A
    P/S: 1.26 Price/Book: 0.84 EV/EBITDA: 5.76
    Market Cap: $2.60B Avg. Daily Volume: 168,047 52 Week Range: $49.58 – $60

    3. RPC Inc. (RES): $14.11

    Chairman of the Board R. Randall Rollins acquired 415,800 shares of this oilfield services and equipment provider, paying $11.99 per share for a total amount of $4.99 million. These shares were purchased indirectly by RFPS Management Co. II, LP

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for RPC Inc. here.

    P/E: 15.01 Forward P/E: 13.97 Industry P/E: N/A
    P/S: 1.35 Price/Book: 2.79 EV/EBITDA: 4.76
    Market Cap: $3.08B Avg. Daily Volume: 1,639,780 52 Week Range: $11.55 – $25.15

    4. La Jolla Pharmaceutical Co. (LJPC): $20.15

    Director Kevin C. Tang acquired 232,925 shares of this biotech company, paying $12.85 per share for a total amount of $2.99 million. These shares were purchased indirectly Tang Capital Partners, LP

    La Jolla Pharmaceuticals saw its stock head steadily higher following these purchases by Mr. Tang, ending the week with an unusually large 16.81% jump on Friday.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for La Jolla Pharmaceutical Co. here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: N/A Industry P/E: N/A
    P/S: N/A Price/Book: 5.7 EV/EBITDA: -6.93
    Market Cap: $306.78M Avg. Daily Volume: 174,056 52 Week Range: $0.16 – $20.41

    5. Compass Diversified Holdings (CODI): $16.35

    Shares of this private equity firm were purchased by two insiders:

    • Director and Chief Executive Alan B. Offenberg acquired 46,250 shares, paying $16.16 per share for a total amount of $747,343.
    • Assistant Secretary Elias Sabo acquired 45,126 shares, paying $15.95 per share for a total amount of $719,773.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Compass Diversified Holdings here.

    P/E: 3.36 Forward P/E: 11.12 Industry P/E: N/A
    P/S: 0.81 Price/Book: 1.13 EV/EBITDA: 10.65
    Market Cap: $789.69M Avg. Daily Volume: 272,770 52 Week Range: $15.35 – $19.84

    You can view the full list of purchases from this Insider Buying page.

    Notable Insider Sales:

    1. Western Gas Partners LP (WES): $71.18

    Director James R. Crane sold 300,000 shares of this oil & gas pipelines company for $68.77, generating $20.63 million from the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Western Gas Partners LP here.

    P/E: 31.34 Forward P/E: 30.03 Industry P/E: N/A
    P/S: 6.67 Price/Book: 3.35 EV/EBITDA: 16.46
    Market Cap: $8.48B Avg. Daily Volume: 544,561 52 Week Range: $58.5 – $79.81

    2. Restoration Hardware Holdings, Inc. (RH): $96.4

    Shares of this home furnishing company were sold by 3 insiders:

    • Director Thomas D. Mottola sold 163,733 shares for $95.25, generating $15.59 million from the sale.
    • Director Eri Chaya sold 20,000 shares for $93.74, generating $1.87 million from the sale.
    • Chief Financial and Administrative Officer Karen Boone sold 8,000 shares for $95.28, generating $762,240 from the sale. These shares were sold as a result of exercising options immediately prior to the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Restoration Hardware Holdings, Inc. here.

    P/E: 54.25 Forward P/E: 32.24 Industry P/E: N/A
    P/S: 2.23 Price/Book: 6.13 EV/EBITDA: 15.6
    Market Cap: $3.81B Avg. Daily Volume: 946,841 52 Week Range: $54.61 – $100.66

    3. Graham Holdings (GHC): $880.53

    Shares of this education and media company were sold by 3 insiders:

    • CEO and COB Donald Graham sold 12,977 shares for $900.36, generating $11.68 million from the sale. These shares were sold indirectly through a trust.
    • Senior VP-Finance and CFO Hal Jones sold 2,000 shares for $940.85, generating $1.88 million from the sale. These shares were sold as a result of exercising options immediately prior to the sale.
    • Senior Vice President Ann McDaniel sold 400 shares for $886.01, generating $354,404 from the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Graham Holdings here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: N/A Industry P/E: N/A
    P/S: N/A Price/Book: N/A EV/EBITDA: N/A
    Market Cap: $N/A Avg. Daily Volume: N/A 52 Week Range: $611.47 – $950.08

    4. Intercontinental Exchange, Inc. (ICE): $221.62

    Shares of this financial services and brokerage company were sold by 2 insiders:

    • Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey C. Sprecher sold 38,700 shares for $216.74, generating $8.39 million from the sale. 30,000 of these shares were sold indirectly through CPEX and 8,000 of these shares were sold as a result of exercising options immediately prior to the sale.
    • General Counsel & Corporate Secretary Johnathan H. Short sold 963 shares for $223.38, generating $215,115 from the sale. 741 of these shares were sold as a result of exercising options immediately prior to the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Intercontinental Exchange, Inc. here.

    P/E: 47.2 Forward P/E: 18.62 Industry P/E: N/A
    P/S: 8.87 Price/Book: 2.01 EV/EBITDA: 16.47
    Market Cap: $25.50B Avg. Daily Volume: 801,247 52 Week Range: $182.4 – $229.5

    5. Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (VRTX): $118.9

    Shares of this biotech company were sold by 5 insiders:

    • CEO & President Jeffrey M. Leiden sold 50,017 shares for $114.97, generating $5.75 million from the sale.
    • Director Joshua S. Boger sold 10,500 shares for $110.66, generating $1.16 million from the sale. These shares were sold as a result of exercising options immediately prior to the sale.
    • EVP & CFO Ian F. Smith sold 6,042 shares for $120.12, generating $725,738 from the sale.
    • SVP & Corp Controller Paul M. Silva sold 2,813 shares for $120.08, generating $337,780 from the sale.
    • SVP, Human Resources Thomas Connolly sold 520 shares for $120.06, generating $62,429 from the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: N/A Industry P/E: N/A
    P/S: 35.98 Price/Book: 24.47 EV/EBITDA: -62.63
    Market Cap: $28.60B Avg. Daily Volume: 1,734,840 52 Week Range: $59.79 – $124.35

    You can view the full list of sales from this Insider Sales page.

    Connect with me on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/asifsuria

    Insider Weekends – December 12, 2014

    Welcome to edition 234 of Insider Weekends. In a week where we saw the Dow post its biggest weekly decline since 2011, insider buying more than quadrupled with insiders buying $190.94 million of stock compared to $44.02 million in the week prior. Part of this buying was driven by insiders from the energy sector as we saw in our previous report and the other part was driven by certain value-oriented and biotech funds adding to their positions. Selling declined with insiders selling $1.34 billion of stock last week compared to $1.47 billion in the week prior.

    Some of the fund related purchases include the biotech-focused Baker Brothers adding to their position in Seattle Genetics (SGEN) to the tune of $42.29 million, Jeffrey Ubben of San Francisco based value-oriented fund ValueAct Capital pitching in an additional $35 million to add to his position in Valeant Pharmaceuticals (VRX) and Carl Icahn’s ex-prodigy Mark Rachesky adding to his position in large tire manufacturer Titan International (TWI).

    Sell/Buy Ratio: The insider Sell/Buy ratio is calculated by dividing the total insider sales in a given week by total insider purchases that week. The adjusted ratio for last week dropped to 7.02. In other words, insiders sold 7 times as much stock as they purchased. The Sell/Buy ratio this week compares favorably with the prior week, when the ratio stood at 33.47. We are calculating an adjusted ratio by removing transactions by funds and companies and trying as best as possible only to retain information about insiders and 10% owners who are not funds or companies.

    Insider Sell Buy Ratio December 12, 2014

    Insider Sell Buy Ratio December 12, 2014

    Note: As mentioned in the first post in this series, certain industries have their preferred metrics such as same store sales for retailers, funds from operations (FFO) for REITs and revenue per available room (RevPAR) for hotels that provide a better basis for comparison than simple valuation metrics. However metrics like Price/Earnings, Price/Sales and Enterprise Value/EBITDA included below should provide a good starting point for analyzing the majority of stocks.

    Notable Insider Buys:

    1. RPC Inc. (RES): $11.86

    Chairman of the Board R. Randall Rollins acquired 1,228,400 shares of this oilfield services and equipment provider, paying $12.18 per share for a total amount of $14.96 million. These shares were purchased indirectly by RFPS Investments II, LP.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for RPC Inc. here.

    P/E: 12.62 Forward P/E: 9.49 Industry P/E: 13.41
    P/S: 1.19 Price/Book: 2.46 EV/EBITDA: 4.76
    Market Cap: $2.59B Avg. Daily Volume: 1,515,790 52 Week Range: $11.55 – $25.15

    2. Freeport-McMoRan Inc. (FCX): $21.78

    Vice Chairman of the Board James C. Flores acquired 500,000 shares of this mining company, paying $23.60 per share for a total amount of $11.8 million. These shares were purchased indirectly by Flores Family Limited Partnership.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Freeport-McMoRan Inc. here.

    P/E: 10.13 Forward P/E: 9.95 Industry P/E: 15.44
    P/S: 1.08 Price/Book: 1.11 EV/EBITDA: 4.96
    Market Cap: $22.63B Avg. Daily Volume: 13,292,500 52 Week Range: $21.77 – $39.32

    3. EV Energy Partners LP (EVEP): $23.83

    Executive Chairman of the Board John B. Walker acquired 150,000 shares of this oil & natural gas exploration and production company, paying $24.46 per share for a total amount of $3.67 million. Mr. Walker increased his stake by 8.27% to 1,963,698 shares with this purchase. 75,000 of these shares were purchased indirectly by John B. and Lisa A. Walker, L.P.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for EV Energy Partners LP here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: 12.88 Industry P/E: 9.46
    P/S: 3.32 Price/Book: 1.14 EV/EBITDA: 14.14
    Market Cap: $1.16B Avg. Daily Volume: 363,862 52 Week Range: $22.18 – $41.97

    4. Endurance Specialty Holdings Ltd. (ENH): $58.02

    Chairman & Chief Executive Officer John “King of the London Insurance Market” Charman acquired 57,968 shares of this insurance company, paying $58.36 per share for a total amount of $3.38 million. 35,312 of these shares were purchased indirectly through various trusts.

    We have seen insider purchases by Mr. Charman in the past but this is his largest purchase of Endurance since he took over the position of CEO in May 2013.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Endurance Specialty Holdings Ltd. here.

    P/E: 8.67 Forward P/E: 9.9 Industry P/E: 12.15
    P/S: 1.27 Price/Book: 0.84 EV/EBITDA: 5.76
    Market Cap: $2.60B Avg. Daily Volume: 165,200 52 Week Range: $49.58 – $60

    5. Prospect Capital Corporation (PSEC): $8.11

    Shares of this business development company were acquired by 3 insiders:

    • Chief Executive Officer John F. Barry acquired 132,200 shares, paying $8.46 per share for a total amount of $1.12 million. Mr. Barry increased his stake by 2.81% to 4,833,410 shares with this purchase.
    • CFO, CCO, Treasury & Secretary Brian H. Oswald acquired 63,500 shares, paying $8.35 per share for a total amount of $529,965. Mr. Oswald increased his stake by 20.39% to 375,000 shares with this purchase.
    • Chief Operating Officer Grier M. Eliasek acquired 25,000 shares, paying $8.31 per share for a total amount of $207,740. Mr. Eliasek increased his stake by 10.11% to 272,196 shares with this purchase.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Prospect Capital Corporation here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: N/A Industry P/E: 13.31
    P/S: N/A Price/Book: N/A EV/EBITDA: N/A
    Market Cap: $N/A Avg. Daily Volume: N/A 52 Week Range: $8.02 – $11.4

    You can view the full list of purchases from this Insider Buying page.

    Notable Insider Sales:

    1. Twitter, Inc. (TWTR): $37.1

    Shares of Twitter were sold by 2 insiders:

    • Director Evan Clark Williams sold 372,000 shares for $36.87, generating $13.72 million from the sale. 349,680 of these shares were sold indirectly through various trusts.
    • Vice President of Product Kevin Weil sold 5,426 shares for $39.96, generating $216,842 from the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Twitter, Inc. here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: 109.12 Industry P/E: 36.26
    P/S: 19.67 Price/Book: 6.51 EV/EBITDA: -26.75
    Market Cap: $23.19B Avg. Daily Volume: 25,406,000 52 Week Range: $29.51 – $74.73

    2. Masco Corporation (MAS): $24.05

    Director Richard A. Manoogian sold 500,000 shares of this building materials company for $24.83, generating $12.42 million from the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Masco Corporation here.

    P/E: 10.97 Forward P/E: 18.94 Industry P/E: 24.69
    P/S: 1.03 Price/Book: 7.48 EV/EBITDA: 10.95
    Market Cap: $8.57B Avg. Daily Volume: 4,583,180 52 Week Range: $19.5 – $25.07

    3. IPG Photonics Corporation (IPGP): $75.13

    Shares of this optical fiber-based lasers company were sold by 2 insiders:

    • CEO & Chairman of the Board Valentin P. Gapontsev sold 130,000 shares for $77.06, generating $10.02 million from the sale.
    • SVP, Chief Financial Officer Timothy P. V. Mammen sold 700 shares for $77.60, generating $54,320 from the sale. These shares were sold as a result of exercising options immediately prior to the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for IPG Photonics Corporation here.

    P/E: 21.96 Forward P/E: 17.89 Industry P/E: 21.42
    P/S: 5.3 Price/Book: 3.72 EV/EBITDA: 11.89
    Market Cap: $3.92B Avg. Daily Volume: 480,667 52 Week Range: $60.31 – $79

    4. News Corporation (NWS): $14.65

    Director James R. Murdoch sold 613,425 shares of this media company for $15.64, generating $9.59 million from the sale. These shares were sold indirectly through a trust.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for News Corporation here.

    P/E: 31.17 Forward P/E: N/A Industry P/E: N/A
    P/S: 0.99 Price/Book: 0.67 EV/EBITDA: 9.07
    Market Cap: $8.50B Avg. Daily Volume: 1,402,810 52 Week Range: $14.09 – $18.03

    5. Henry Schein, Inc. (HSIC): $133.8

    Chairman, CEO Stanley M. Bergman sold 69,600 shares of this healthcare products & services company for $135.56, generating $9.44 million from the sale. 34,832 of these shares were sold indirectly through a trust and 34,678 shares were sold indirectly by Mr. Bergman’s spouse.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Henry Schein, Inc. here.

    P/E: 25.13 Forward P/E: 22.45 Industry P/E: 25.36
    P/S: 1.12 Price/Book: 4.05 EV/EBITDA: 14.36
    Market Cap: $11.27B Avg. Daily Volume: 532,262 52 Week Range: $109.34 – $138.41

    You can view the full list of sales from this Insider Sales page.

    Voluntary Disclosure: I hold long positions in Twitter (TWTR), Titan International (TWI) and Freeport-McMoRan (FCX).

    Connect with me on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/asifsuria

    Insider Weekends – December 5, 2014

    Welcome to edition 233 of Insider Weekends. Insider buying decreased last week with insiders buying $44.02 million of stock compared to $59.33 million in the week prior. Selling also declined with insiders selling $1.47 billion of stock last week compared to $1.73 billion in the week prior.

    With the energy sector in turmoil on account of falling oil prices, it was interesting to see several insider purchases this week that were related to the energy sector. We saw buying in everything from oil exploration companies to companies that provide services or materials to the industry. Several of these stocks have lost more than half their value this year and it is possible that these insiders are early as we saw with the insiders of Noble (NE), who saw the stock drop nearly 50% following their purchases earlier this year.

    Two of these energy sector related stocks (OCIP and HCLP) made the list of top 5 purchases this week. Others that did not make the list include Transocean (RIG), Continental Resources (CLR), Jones Energy (JONE), DXP Enterprises (DXPE), EP Energy Corp (EPE) and Mid-Con Energy Partners (MCEP) just to name a few.

    Sell/Buy Ratio: The insider Sell/Buy ratio is calculated by dividing the total insider sales in a given week by total insider purchases that week. The adjusted ratio for last week went up to 33.47. In other words, insiders sold  more than 33 times as much stock as they purchased. The Sell/Buy ratio this week compares unfavorably with the prior week, when the ratio stood at 29.22. We are calculating an adjusted ratio by removing transactions by funds and companies and trying as best as possible only to retain information about insiders and 10% owners who are not funds or companies.

    Insider Sell Buy Ratio December 5, 2014

    Insider Sell Buy Ratio December 5, 2014

    Note: As mentioned in the first post in this series, certain industries have their preferred metrics such as same store sales for retailers, funds from operations (FFO) for REITs and revenue per available room (RevPAR) for hotels that provide a better basis for comparison than simple valuation metrics. However metrics like Price/Earnings, Price/Sales and Enterprise Value/EBITDA included below should provide a good starting point for analyzing the majority of stocks.

    Notable Insider Buys:

    1. SFX Entertainment Inc. (SFXE): $4.41

    Shares of this live events and digital entertainment producer were acquired by 2 insiders:

    • CEO and Chairman of the Board Robert F. Sillerman acquired 2,183,836 shares, paying $4.26 per share for a total amount of $9.3 million. These shares were purchased indirectly by Sillerman Investment Company III LLC.
    • V.C. of the Board of Directors Mitchell J. Slater acquired 40,000 shares, paying $4.42 per share for a total amount of $176,900.

    This is the third week in a row we have reported insider purchases by Mr. Sillerman.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for SFX Entertainment Inc. here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: N/A Industry P/E: 25.27
    P/S: 1.14 Price/Book: 1.43 EV/EBITDA: -8.32
    Market Cap: $399.40M Avg. Daily Volume: 794,641 52 Week Range: $3.52 – $12.15

    2. OCI Partners LP (OCIP): $16.72

    Director Nassef Sawiris acquired 191,715 shares of this ammonia and methanol production company, paying $16.98 per share for a total amount of $3.26 million. These shares were purchased indirectly by NNS Holding.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for OCI Partners LP here.

    P/E: 43.77 Forward P/E: 8.28 Industry P/E: 18.77
    P/S: 3.26 Price/Book: 11.42 EV/EBITDA: 9.22
    Market Cap: $1.35B Avg. Daily Volume: 45,416 52 Week Range: $16.38 – $28.73

    3. Prospect Capital Corporation (PSEC): $8.89

    Shares of this business development company were acquired by 2 insiders:

    • CFO, CCO, Treasury & Secretary Brian H. Oswald acquired 162,500 shares, paying $9.12 per share for a total amount of $1.48 million. Mr. Oswald increased his stake by 109.06% to 311,500 shares with this purchase.
    • Chief Operating Officer M. Grier Eliasek acquired 50,000 shares, paying $9.10 per share for a total amount of $455,000. Mr. Eliasek increased his stake by 25.36% to 247,196 shares with this purchase.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Prospect Capital Corporation here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: N/A Industry P/E: 13.57
    P/S: N/A Price/Book: N/A EV/EBITDA: N/A
    Market Cap: $N/A Avg. Daily Volume: N/A 52 Week Range: $8.5 – $11.4

    4. Hi-Crush Partners LP (HCLP): $35.68

    Co-CEO and Director Robert E. Rasmus acquired 30,000 shares of this producer of monocrystalline sand, paying $38.70 per share for a total amount of $1.16 million. These shares were purchased indirectly by RER Investments LLC.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Hi-Crush Partners LP here.

    P/E: 11.68 Forward P/E: 8.34 Industry P/E: 17.32
    P/S: 4.79 Price/Book: 8.4 EV/EBITDA: 13
    Market Cap: $1.32B Avg. Daily Volume: 692,814 52 Week Range: $30.51 – $71.88

    5. Rocket Fuel Inc. (FUEL): $15.16

    Co-Founder, CEO & Chairman George H. John acquired 60,000 shares of this digital advertising company, paying $17.23 per share for a total amount of $1.03 million. Mr. John increased his stake by 2.65% to 2,322,924 shares with this purchase.

    Rocket Fuel has had a tough 2014 with the stock down over 75% this year even as the Nasdaq is up nearly 15%. While revenue is growing rapidly, losses have been growing as well. It is a little surprising that the short ratio is only 4.5 at this time, implying that shorts have probably covered what proved to be a very profitable trade. In simple terms, the company helps customers target their digital advertising effort for maximum ROI.

    It was interesting to see that even as one co-founder was acquiring shares, the other one was selling them.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Rocket Fuel Inc. here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: N/A Industry P/E: 20.92
    P/S: 1.87 Price/Book: 2.06 EV/EBITDA: -19.82
    Market Cap: $626.03M Avg. Daily Volume: 782,367 52 Week Range: $14.29 – $71.89

    You can view the full list of purchases from this Insider Buying page.

    Notable Insider Sales:

    1. Twenty-First Century Fox, Inc. (FOX): $36.52

    Chairman and CEO Keith Rupert Murdoch sold 3,000,000 shares of this entertainment company for $36.02, generating $108.07 million from the sale. These shares were sold indirectly through a trust.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Twenty-First Century Fox, Inc. here.

    P/E: 19.01 Forward P/E: 16.38 Industry P/E: N/A
    P/S: 2.38 Price/Book: 4.83 EV/EBITDA: 13.89
    Market Cap: $78.74B Avg. Daily Volume: 3,591,970 52 Week Range: $30.02 – $36.57

    2. Google Inc. (GOOG): $525.26

    Co-Founder Sergey Brin sold 166,668 shares of Google for $535.45, generating $89.24 million from the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Google Inc. here.

    P/E: 27.64 Forward P/E: 17.87 Industry P/E: 37.2
    P/S: 5.37 Price/Book: 3.69 EV/EBITDA: 15.28
    Market Cap: $356.32B Avg. Daily Volume: 1,825,980 52 Week Range: $502.8 – $604.83

    3. ServiceNow, Inc. (NOW): $62.63

    Shares of this software-as-a-service provider were sold by 2 insiders:

    • Chief Product Officer Frederic B. Luddy sold 151,400 shares for $61.59, generating $9.32 million from the sale. 50,000 of these shares were sold indirectly by Frederic B. Luddy CRT, LLC. and 1,400 shares were sold indirectly by Mr. Luddy’s spouse.
    • President & CEO Frank Slootman sold 120,000 shares for $61.84, generating $7.42 million from the sale. These shares were sold as a result of exercising options immediately prior to the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for ServiceNow, Inc. here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: 313.15 Industry P/E: 17.33
    P/S: 15.2 Price/Book: 22.08 EV/EBITDA: -92.01
    Market Cap: $9.29B Avg. Daily Volume: 1,249,630 52 Week Range: $44.17 – $71.8

    4. Advance Auto Parts Inc. (AAP): $154.18

    Shares of this auto parts company were sold by 3 insiders:

    • CEO Darren R. Jackson sold 75,000 shares for $150.11, generating $11.26 million from the sale. 755 of these share were sold to satisfy a tax withholding obligation upon the vesting of restricted stock units.
    • Director Jimmie L. Wade sold 4,639 shares for $148.38, generating $688,335 from the sale. 104 of these shares were sold to satisfy a tax withholding obligation upon the vesting of restricted stock units.
    • Director John C. Brouillard sold 4,235 shares for $150.89, generating $639,019 from the sale. These shares were sold as a result of exercising options immediately prior to the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Advance Auto Parts Inc. here.

    P/E: 24.75 Forward P/E: 17.8 Industry P/E: 24.6
    P/S: 1.24 Price/Book: 5.81 EV/EBITDA: 11.42
    Market Cap: $11.25B Avg. Daily Volume: 812,958 52 Week Range: $103.94 – $154.37

    5. Cisco Systems, Inc. (CSCO): $27.5

    Shares of Cisco were sold by 3 insiders:

    • Chairman and CEO John T. Chambers sold 250,000 shares for $27.50, generating $6.88 million from the sale.
    • EVP and CFO Frank Calderoni sold 100,000 shares for $27.46, generating $2.75 million from the sale.
    • SVP, Legal Services, General Counsel & Secretary Mark D. Chandler sold 78,191 shares for $27.90, generating $2.18 million from the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Cisco Systems, Inc. here.

    P/E: 18.71 Forward P/E: 12.28 Industry P/E: 18.89
    P/S: 3 Price/Book: 2.5 EV/EBITDA: 8.42
    Market Cap: $140.62B Avg. Daily Volume: 28,120,100 52 Week Range: $20.22 – $27.99

    You can view the full list of sales from this Insider Sales page.

    Voluntary Disclosure: I hold long positions in Noble (NE) and DXP Enterprises (DXPE).

    Connect with me on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/asifsuria

    Insider Weekends – November 28, 2014

    Welcome to edition 232 of Insider Weekends. Insider buying decreased last week with insiders buying $59.33 million of stock compared to $68.12 million in the week prior. Selling increased a little with insiders selling $1.73 billion of stock last week compared to $1.69 billion in the week prior.

    Sell/Buy Ratio: The insider Sell/Buy ratio is calculated by dividing the total insider sales in a given week by total insider purchases that week. The adjusted ratio for last week went up to 29.22. In other words, insiders sold  more than 29 times as much stock as they purchased. The Sell/Buy ratio this week compares unfavorably with the prior week, when the ratio stood at 24.94. We are calculating an adjusted ratio by removing transactions by funds and companies and trying as best as possible only to retain information about insiders and 10% owners who are not funds or companies.

    Insider Sell Buy Ratio November 28, 2014

    Insider Sell Buy Ratio November 28, 2014

    Note: As mentioned in the first post in this series, certain industries have their preferred metrics such as same store sales for retailers, funds from operations (FFO) for REITs and revenue per available room (RevPAR) for hotels that provide a better basis for comparison than simple valuation metrics. However metrics like Price/Earnings, Price/Sales and Enterprise Value/EBITDA included below should provide a good starting point for analyzing the majority of stocks.

    Notable Insider Buys:

    1. Air Products & Chemicals Inc. (APD): $143.83

    Chairman, President and CEO Seifi Ghasemi acquired 30,000 shares of this supplier of industrial gases and performance material, paying $144.67 per share for a total amount of $4.34 million. Mr. Ghasemi increased his stake by 29.99% to 130,026 shares with this purchase.

    This is the second week in a row we have seen large purchases by Mr. Ghasemi.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Air Products & Chemicals Inc. here.

    P/E: 31.19 Forward P/E: 19.95 Industry P/E: 18.76
    P/S: 2.97 Price/Book: 4.21 EV/EBITDA: 14.03
    Market Cap: $30.74B Avg. Daily Volume: 1,931,700 52 Week Range: $102.73 – $146.46

    2. Rex Energy Corporation (REXX): $7.02

    Shares of this oil & gas exploration company were acquired by 3 insiders:

    • Director Lance T. Shaner acquired 487,800 shares, paying $8.78 per share for a total amount of $4.28 million. Mr. Shaner increased his stake by 17.89% to 3,214,685 shares with this purchase. 243,900 of these shares were purchased indirectly through trusts.
    • Chief Accounting Officer Curtis J. Walker acquired 2,000 shares, paying $8.27 per share for a total amount of $16,540. Mr. Walker increased his stake by 3.79% to 54,755 shares with this purchase.
    • Director John A. Lombardi acquired 1,000 shares, paying $8.64 per share for a total amount of $8,640. Mr. Lombardi increased his stake by 2.76% to 37,292 shares with this purchase.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Rex Energy Corporation here.

    P/E: 49.79 Forward P/E: 43.87 Industry P/E: 12.03
    P/S: 1.31 Price/Book: 0.75 EV/EBITDA: 5.74
    Market Cap: $367.61M Avg. Daily Volume: 2,109,300 52 Week Range: $6.62 – $22

    3. Ashford, Inc. (AINC): $118.75

    CEO and Chairman of the Board Monty J. Bennett acquired 20,019 shares of this real estate asset management company, paying $115.56 per share for a total amount of $2.31 million. These shares were purchased indirectly by MJB Investments LP.

    Ashford topped the list of insider purchases last week and we wrote the following about the company,

    “Ashford was spun-out from Ashford Hospitality Trust (AHT) on November 12, 2014 and started trading as a public company the following day.

    I got very different historical price data from various sites but it is very clear that the stock has close to doubled during its short trading life. It is interesting to see insiders buying right after the spin-off even as the stock marched higher.”

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Ashford, Inc. here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: N/A Industry P/E: N/A
    P/S: N/A Price/Book: N/A EV/EBITDA: N/A
    Market Cap: $N/A Avg. Daily Volume: 87,322 52 Week Range: $64.11 – $131.01

    4. Hertz Global Holdings, Inc. (HTZ): $23.74

    Shares of this car rental company were acquired by 2 insiders:

    • President and CEO John P. Tague acquired 84,200 shares, paying $24.11 per share for a total amount of $2.03 million.
    • Director Linda Fayne Levinson acquired 5,000 shares, paying $24.11 per share for a total amount of $120,550. Mr. Levinson increased his stake by 23.88% to 25,934 shares with this purchase.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Hertz Global Holdings, Inc. here.

    P/E: 31.24 Forward P/E: 17.33 Industry P/E: 18.41
    P/S: 1.01 Price/Book: 3.9 EV/EBITDA: 14.05
    Market Cap: $10.63B Avg. Daily Volume: 11,712,500 52 Week Range: $18.5 – $31.61

    5. SFX Entertainment Inc. (SFXE): $4.35

    CEO and Chairman of the Board Robert F. Sillerman acquired 409,454 shares of this live events and digital entertainment producer, paying $4.30 per share for a total amount of $1.76 million. These shares were purchased indirectly by Sillerman Investment Company III LLC.

    This feels like a week of repeats as three of the top 5 purchases were also on last week’s list including SFXE. We wrote the following about the company following the purchase by the CEO last week,

    The only thing more troubling than the lack of operating profits and growing debt on the balance sheet is the behavior of the CEO as he disembarked from a private jet earlier this year. Following this behavior, an analyst asked on the company’s earnings conference call asked him about it and remarked, “We’re just trying to make sure that you’re still sane.”

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for SFX Entertainment Inc. here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: N/A Industry P/E: 26.21
    P/S: 1.11 Price/Book: 1.4 EV/EBITDA: -8.07
    Market Cap: $393.97M Avg. Daily Volume: 779,616 52 Week Range: $3.52 – $12.15

    You can view the full list of purchases from this Insider Buying page.

    Notable Insider Sales:

    1. Twitter, Inc. (TWTR): $41.74

    Shares of Twitter were sold by 2 insiders:

    • Director Evan Clark Williams sold 719,193 shares for $39.95, generating $28.73 million from the sale. These shares were sold indirectly through various trusts.
    • VP, Finance and Accounting Off Luca Baratta sold 417 shares for $40.00, generating $16,680 from the sale. These shares were sold as a result of exercising options immediately prior to the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Twitter, Inc. here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: 122.76 Industry P/E: 37.43
    P/S: 22.04 Price/Book: 7.3 EV/EBITDA: -30.8
    Market Cap: $26.09B Avg. Daily Volume: 27,260,300 52 Week Range: $29.51 – $74.73

    2. Artisan Partners Asset Management Inc. (APAM): $51.75

    Director Tench Coxe sold 542,958 shares of this asset management company for $50.00, generating $27.15 million from the sale. These shares were sold indirectly by Sutter Hill Ventures.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Artisan Partners Asset Management Inc. here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: N/A Industry P/E: 14.05
    P/S: N/A Price/Book: N/A EV/EBITDA: N/A
    Market Cap: $N/A Avg. Daily Volume: N/A 52 Week Range: $44.86 – $71.86

    3. The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (GS): $188.41

    Shares of Goldman Sachs were sold by 2 insiders:

    • Executive VP – General Counsel Gregory K. Palm sold 48,325 shares for $190.09, generating $9.19 million from the sale. 23,325 of these shares were sold as a result of exercising options immediately prior to the sale.
    • Director Debora L. Spar sold 300 shares for $190.22, generating $57,066 from the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. here.

    P/E: 10.9 Forward P/E: 10.78 Industry P/E: 21.81
    P/S: 2.39 Price/Book: 1.16 EV/EBITDA: N/A
    Market Cap: $85.31B Avg. Daily Volume: 2,781,010 52 Week Range: $151.65 – $192.68

    4. Five Below, Inc. (FIVE): $46.66

    Shares of this specialty value retailer were sold by 2 insiders:

    • CEO Thomas Vellios sold 100,000 shares for $46.30, generating $4.63 million from the sale.
    • Executive Chairman David Schlessinger sold 100,000 shares for $45.36, generating $4.54 million from the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Five Below, Inc. here.

    P/E: 66.94 Forward P/E: 39.88 Industry P/E: 25.06
    P/S: 4.16 Price/Book: 18.83 EV/EBITDA: 32.01
    Market Cap: $2.53B Avg. Daily Volume: 862,939 52 Week Range: $33.94 – $53.58

    5. Seagate Technology Public Limited Company (STX): $66.11

    Shares of this data storage company were sold by 3 insiders:

    • Chairman and CEO Stephen J. Luczo sold 92,017 shares for $65.00, generating $5.98 million from the sale. These shares were sold indirectly through a trust.
    • Executive Vice President, Sales David K. Richarz sold 15,400 shares for $65.35, generating $1 million from the sale.
    • Director Jay L. Geldmacher sold 5,000 shares for $66.00, generating $330,000 from the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Seagate Technology Public Limited Company here.

    P/E: 14.73 Forward P/E: 11.44 Industry P/E: N/A
    P/S: 1.54 Price/Book: 7.31 EV/EBITDA: 8.7
    Market Cap: $21.63B Avg. Daily Volume: 2,941,220 52 Week Range: $48.21 – $66.68

    You can view the full list of sales from this Insider Sales page.

    Voluntary Disclosure: I hold long positions in Twitter (TWTR) and Hertz (HTZ).

    Connect with me on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/asifsuria

    Insider Weekends – November 21, 2014

    Welcome to edition 231 of Insider Weekends. Insider buying decreased last week with insiders buying $68.12 million of stock compared to $73.83 million in the week prior. Selling increased a little with insiders selling $1.69 billion of stock last week compared to $1.67 billion in the week prior.

    Sell/Buy Ratio: The insider Sell/Buy ratio is calculated by dividing the total insider sales in a given week by total insider purchases that week. The adjusted ratio for last week went up to 24.94. In other words, insiders sold  almost 25 times as much stock as they purchased. The Sell/Buy ratio this week compares unfavorably with the prior week, when the ratio stood at 22.67. We are calculating an adjusted ratio by removing transactions by funds and companies and trying as best as possible only to retain information about insiders and 10% owners who are not funds or companies.

    Insider Sell Buy Ratio November 21, 2014

    Insider Sell Buy Ratio November 21, 2014

    Note: As mentioned in the first post in this series, certain industries have their preferred metrics such as same store sales for retailers, funds from operations (FFO) for REITs and revenue per available room (RevPAR) for hotels that provide a better basis for comparison than simple valuation metrics. However metrics like Price/Earnings, Price/Sales and Enterprise Value/EBITDA included below should provide a good starting point for analyzing the majority of stocks.

    Notable Insider Buys:

    1. Ashford, Inc. (AINC): $104.52

    Shares of this real estate asset management company were acquired by 2 insiders:

    • Chief Executive Officer Montgomery J. Bennett acquired 83,246 shares, paying $92.27 per share for a total amount of $7.68 million. These shares were acquired indirectly by MJB Investments LP.
    • Chief Strategy Officer J Robison Hays acquired 500 shares, paying $94.12 per share for a total amount of $47,059. Mr. Hays increased his stake by 6.50% to 8,194 shares with this purchase.

    Ashford was spun-out from Ashford Hospitality Trust (AHT) on November 12, 2014 and started trading as a public company the following day.

    I got very different historical price data from various sites but it is very clear that the stock has close to doubled during its short trading life. It is interesting to see insiders buying right after the spin-off even as the stock marched higher.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Ashford, Inc. here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: N/A Industry P/E: N/A
    P/S: N/A Price/Book: N/A EV/EBITDA: N/A
    Market Cap: $N/A Avg. Daily Volume: 110,820 52 Week Range: $64.11 – $111.87

    2. Aon plc (AON): $91.39

    Director Lester B. Knight acquired 60,000 shares of this risk management, HR services and insurance company, paying $90.44 per share for a total amount of $5.43 million. These shares were purchased indirectly through a trust.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Aon plc here.

    P/E: 21.47 Forward P/E: 14.96 Industry P/E: 21.33
    P/S: 2.16 Price/Book: 3.57 EV/EBITDA: 12.78
    Market Cap: $26.06B Avg. Daily Volume: 1,423,870 52 Week Range: $76.49 – $91.52

    3. Air Products & Chemicals Inc. (APD): $145.15

    Chairman, President and CEO Seifi Ghasemi acquired 23,000 shares of this supplier of industrial gases and performance material, paying $138.97 per share for a total amount of $3.2 million. Mr. Ghasemi increased his stake by 29.86% to 100,026 shares with this purchase.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Air Products & Chemicals Inc. here.

    P/E: 31.48 Forward P/E: 20.13 Industry P/E: 18.81
    P/S: 2.92 Price/Book: 4.14 EV/EBITDA: 13.88
    Market Cap: $31.02B Avg. Daily Volume: 1,914,840 52 Week Range: $102.73 – $145.39

    4. Rackspace Hosting, Inc. (RAX): $44.92

    Director Graham M. Weston acquired 58,480 shares of this server and cloud hosting company, paying $42.75 per share for a total amount of $2.5 million. Mr. Weston increased his stake by 30.14% to 252,504 shares with this purchase.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Rackspace Hosting, Inc. here.

    P/E: 68.06 Forward P/E: 48.83 Industry P/E: 16.91
    P/S: 3.68 Price/Book: 5.2 EV/EBITDA: 13.44
    Market Cap: $6.45B Avg. Daily Volume: 2,985,050 52 Week Range: $26.18 – $46.35

    5. SFX Entertainment Inc. (SFXE): $4.12

    CEO and Chairman of the Board Robert F. Sillerman acquired 545,973 shares of this live events and digital entertainment producer, paying $4.01 per share for a total amount of $2.19 million. These shares were acquired indirectly by Sillerman Investment Company III LLC.

    The only thing more troubling than the lack of operating profits and growing debt on the balance sheet is the behavior of the CEO as he disembarked from a private jet earlier this year. Following this behavior, an analyst asked on the company’s earnings conference call asked him about it and remarked, We’re just trying to make sure that you’re still sane.”

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for SFX Entertainment Inc. here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: N/A Industry P/E: 31.03
    P/S: 1.07 Price/Book: 1.35 EV/EBITDA: -7.9
    Market Cap: $373.14M Avg. Daily Volume: 743,411 52 Week Range: $3.52 – $12.15

    You can view the full list of purchases from this Insider Buying page.

    Notable Insider Sales:

    1. The Charles Schwab Corporation (SCHW): $28.28

    Chairman Charles R. Schwab sold 1,500,000 shares of this investment brokerage for $28.58, generating $42.88 million from the sale. These shares were sold indirectly by a limited partnership.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for The Charles Schwab Corporation here.

    P/E: 30.44 Forward P/E: 24.81 Industry P/E: 21.87
    P/S: 6.28 Price/Book: 3.49 EV/EBITDA: N/A
    Market Cap: $36.93B Avg. Daily Volume: 7,281,400 52 Week Range: $23.35 – $31

    2. Cheniere Energy, Inc. (LNG): $74.42

    Shares of this natural gas storage and pipeline company were sold by 2 insiders:

    • Chairman, CEO & President Charif Souki sold 450,000 shares for $71.69, generating $32.26 million from the sale.
    • Sr. VP and General Counsel Greg W. Rayford sold 12,000 shares for $71.43, generating $857,186 from the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Cheniere Energy, Inc. here.

    P/E: N/A Forward P/E: N/A Industry P/E: 32.73
    P/S: 62.46 Price/Book: N/A EV/EBITDA: -100.99
    Market Cap: $16.69B Avg. Daily Volume: 3,645,070 52 Week Range: $38.42 – $85

    3. Jarden Corp. (JAH): $67.99

    Shares of this consumer products company were sold by 3 insiders:

    • Executive Chairman Martin E. Franklin sold 134,000 shares for $66.83, generating $8.95 million from the sale.
    • Vice Chairman and President Ian G. Ashken sold 60,000 shares for $66.83, generating $4 million from the sale.
    • Chief Executive Officer James E. Lillie sold 45,000 shares for $66.83, generating $3 million from the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for Jarden Corp. here.

    P/E: 42.95 Forward P/E: 15.35 Industry P/E: 25.81
    P/S: 1.08 Price/Book: 3.35 EV/EBITDA: 14.11
    Market Cap: $8.72B Avg. Daily Volume: 938,832 52 Week Range: $54.25 – $68.96

    4. The Priceline Group Inc. (PCLN): $1151.46

    Director Jeffery H. Boyd sold 11,500 shares of this online travel company for $1161.20, generating $13.35 million from the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for The Priceline Group Inc. here.

    P/E: 26.01 Forward P/E: 18.63 Industry P/E: 23.51
    P/S: 7.42 Price/Book: 6.92 EV/EBITDA: 18.33
    Market Cap: $60.29B Avg. Daily Volume: 857,255 52 Week Range: $1017.28 – $1378.96

    5. JB Hunt Transport Services Inc. (JBHT): $81.48

    Shares of this trucking company were sold by 3 insiders:

    • Director Gary Charles George sold 125,000 shares for $80.89, generating $10.11 million from the sale. These shares were sold indirectly by Cl George & Sons Ltd.
    • EVP and Chief Operations Officer Alfred C. Harper sold 14,000 shares for $80.69, generating $1.13 million from the sale.
    • VP/Controller John Kuhlow sold 1,802 shares for $80.51, generating $145,079 from the sale.

    You can view the list of recent insider transactions for JB Hunt Transport Services Inc. here.

    P/E: 27.16 Forward P/E: 22.38 Industry P/E: 27
    P/S: 1.57 Price/Book: 8.18 EV/EBITDA: 11.68
    Market Cap: $9.55B Avg. Daily Volume: 974,052 52 Week Range: $69.33 – $82.75

    You can view the full list of sales from this Insider Sales page.

    Voluntary Disclosure: I have a long position in Rackspace Hosting (RAX).

    Connect with me on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/asifsuria