We’d be surprised if Barrett Business Services, Inc. (NASDAQ:BBSI) shareholders haven’t noticed that the Independent Chairman of the Board, Anthony Meeker, recently sold US$152k worth of stock at US$76.17 per share. That sale was 11% of their holding, so it does make us raise an eyebrow.

See our latest analysis for Barrett Business Services

The Last 12 Months Of Insider Transactions At Barrett Business Services

In the last twelve months, the biggest single sale by an insider was when the Independent Director, Jon Justesen, sold US$276k worth of shares at a price of US$70.50 per share. That means that even when the share price was below the current price of US$77.87, an insider wanted to cash in some shares. When an insider sells below the current price, it suggests that they considered that lower price to be fair. That makes us wonder what they think of the (higher) recent 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. It is worth noting that this sale was only 14% of Jon Justesen’s holding.

Over the last year we saw more insider selling of Barrett Business Services shares, than buying. You can see a visual depiction of insider transactions (by companies and individuals) over the last 12 months, below. By clicking on the graph below, you can see the precise details of each insider transaction!

insider-trading-volume
NasdaqGS:BBSI Insider Trading Volume September 3rd 2021

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

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. A high insider ownership often makes company leadership more mindful of shareholder interests. Insiders own 4.7% of Barrett Business Services shares, worth about US$28m. 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 Barrett Business Services Tell Us?

An insider sold stock recently, but they haven’t been buying. Zooming out, the longer term picture doesn’t give us much comfort. Insiders own shares, but we’re still pretty cautious, given the history of sales. So we’d only buy after careful consideration. So these insider transactions can help us build a thesis about the stock, but it’s also worthwhile knowing the risks facing this company. At Simply Wall St, we found 1 warning sign for Barrett Business Services that deserve your attention before buying any shares.

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 currently account for open market transactions and private dispositions, but not derivative transactions.

If you decide to trade Barrett Business Services, use the lowest-cost* platform that is rated #1 Overall by Barron’s, Interactive Brokers. Trade stocks, options, futures, forex, bonds and funds on 135 markets, all from a single integrated account. Promoted

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.
*Interactive Brokers Rated Lowest Cost Broker by StockBrokers.com Annual Online Review 2020

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