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At Facebook and LinkedIn, Company Insiders Are Selling Stock

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Plus, Stine Seed Farm buys NewLink Genetics, a director of General Dynamics buys stock, and the founder of ServiceNow sells.

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In a victory for common sense, the trading behavior of company executives, directors, and large shareholders in the stocks of firms they're registered "insiders" at have been proven profitable to monitor by both academic studies and (more importantly) the experience of your fellow professional investors.

Below are lists of the top 10 mainly open-market insider purchases and sales filed at the Securities and Exchange Commission Tuesday, February 5, 2013 as ranked by dollar value.

Please note, however, that these are factual lists, not buy and sell recommendations. Dollar value is only one metric to assess the importance of an insider transaction, and, frankly, often not even the most important metric that determines if an insider transaction is significant.

In insider purchases, Stine Seed Farm, a Beneficiary Owner of biopharmaceutical company NewLink Genetics (NASDAQ:NLNK), bought $10,032,000 of company stock. Stine Seed Farm is the center of soybean and corn breeding operations for Stine Seed Company, the largest independent seed company in America. Perceptive Advisors, a Beneficial Owner of Aegerion Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:AEGR), which develops and commercializes therapies for patients with rare and fatal diseases, bought $1,389,400 of company stock. At General Dynamics (NYSE:GD), a defense industry contractor that specializes in shipbuilding, marine systems, defense systems, amphibious combat systems, and munitions, Director William Osborn bought $332,375 worth of company tock.

In sales, Bill Gates sold $153,272,352 worth of Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) stock. At Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), Director James Breyer sold $74,077,536, COO Sheryl Sandberg sold $5,105,156, and CFO David Ebersman sold $5,006,323. At ServiceNow (NYSE:NOW), a software-as-a-service (SaaS) provider of IT service management software, Founder and CPO Frederic Luddy sold $12,427,014 of company stock. With three sales at professional social network LinkedIn (NYSE:LNKD), Co-Founder and Director Reid Hoffman sold $10,254,100, Senior Vice President of Products and User Experience Dipchand Nishar sold $8,034,356, and CEO Jeff Weiner sold $4,552,639 of company stock.

At InsiderInsights.com, we find new investment ideas just about every day using these and more intricate insider screens to determine where we should focus our subsequent fundamental and technical analysis. And while stocks don't (or shouldn't) move up or down based on insider activity alone, insiders tend to be good indicators of when real stock-moving events like earnings surprises, corporate actions, and new products may be in the offing.

Insider Purchases
#: Filer Name Insider Titles Company Name Ticker Trans
Type
Dollar Value
1
BO
JB*
$10,032,000
2
BO
B
$1,389,400
3
CEO,DIR,BO
JB*
$500,000
4
CB,CEO,FO
B
$407,504
5
DIR
JB*
$373,756
6
DIR
B
$346,048
7
DIR
B
$332,375
8
BO
B
$285,571
9
CEO,DIR,BO
JB*
$118,993
10
DIR
B
$94,709

Source: InsiderInsights.com | Key to Insider Title and Trans Type Codes

Insider Sales
#: Filer Name Insider Titles Company Name Ticker Trans
Type
Dollar Value
1
DIR
AS
$153,272,352
2
DIR,BO
JS*
$97,619,952
3
DIR
AS
$74,077,536
4
DIR,BO
AS
$12,427,014
5
DIR,BO
AS
$10,254,100
6
VP
AS
$8,034,356
7
BO
S
$6,862,556
8
COO,DIR
AS
$5,105,156
9
CFO
AS
$5,006,323
10
CEO,DIR
AS
$4,552,639

Source: InsiderInsights.com | Key to Insider Title and Trans Type Codes

Editor's note: Jonathan Moreland is the founder of Insider Insights and author of "Profit From Legal Insider Trading."
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No positions in stocks mentioned.
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