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Insiders At Moderna Sold US$3.3m In Stock, Alluding To Potential Weakness

In the last year, many Moderna, Inc. (NASDAQ:MRNA) insiders sold a substantial stake in the company which may have sparked shareholders' attention. Knowing whether insiders are buying is usually more helpful when evaluating insider transactions, as insider selling can have various explanations. However, when multiple insiders sell stock over a specific duration, shareholders should take notice as that could possibly be a red flag.

Although we don't think shareholders should simply follow insider transactions, we do think it is perfectly logical to keep tabs on what insiders are doing.

See our latest analysis for Moderna

Moderna Insider Transactions Over The Last Year

In the last twelve months, the biggest single sale by an insider was when the CEO & Director, Stephane Bancel, sold US$2.3m worth of shares at a price of US$88.88 per share. That means that an insider was selling shares at slightly below the current price (US$101). We generally consider it a negative if insiders have been selling, especially if they did so below the current price, because it implies that they considered a lower price to be reasonable. 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 only 0.1% of Stephane Bancel's holding.

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Insiders in Moderna didn't buy any shares in the last year. You can see the insider transactions (by companies and individuals) over the last year depicted in the chart below. If you click on the chart, you can see all the individual transactions, including the share price, individual, and the date!

insider-trading-volume
insider-trading-volume

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

Moderna Insiders Are Selling The Stock

The last three months saw significant insider selling at Moderna. Specifically, insiders ditched US$3.3m worth of shares in that time, and we didn't record any purchases whatsoever. Overall this makes us a bit cautious, but it's not the be all and end all.

Insider Ownership

I like to look at how many shares insiders own in a company, to help inform my view of how aligned they are with insiders. We usually like to see fairly high levels of insider ownership. Moderna insiders own 9.6% of the company, currently worth about US$3.7b based on the recent share price. 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 Does This Data Suggest About Moderna Insiders?

Insiders sold stock recently, but they haven't been buying. And there weren't any purchases to give us comfort, over the last year. The company boasts high insider ownership, but we're a little hesitant, given the history of share sales. While we like knowing what's going on with the insider's ownership and transactions, we make sure to also consider what risks are facing a stock before making any investment decision. While conducting our analysis, we found that Moderna has 1 warning sign and it would be unwise to ignore it.

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 of direct interests only, but not derivative transactions or indirect interests.

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

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. 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.