uncovers the hottest insider activity from 2023

Insider Buys Stocks

Insider activity can be a telling indicator of where a stock is heading, and the activity was hot in 2023. This is a look at the hottest insider trades tracked by Within it are some surprising and interesting names and ample opportunities for investors. By the time you’ve reached the end, you will know which stocks saw the most buying and selling and why. 

The hottest insider buy is Occidental Petroleum: will it gush higher? 

The hottest insider buy in 2023 was Occidental Petroleum (NYSE: OXY), which is no surprise. Mr. Warren Buffett and his team at Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK.A) have been scooping up this stock for the last two years and are not likely through. The firm made 19 purchases in 2023 for a total cost of $1.789 billion to top the list of insider buying ranked by dollar value. The purchases bring the stake up to about 30%, leaving 20% available under the authorization. 

The reason why Berkshire Hathaway is buying OXY is simple. The company is in a position to buy back the preferred shares sold to Berkshire in 2019. That means the capital structure, balance sheet, cash flow, and capital return outlook are improving, which is just what Mr. Buffett likes to invest in. Because shares of OXY have retreated below $58.50, investors should expect to see news of additional purchases soon. 

OXY stock price chart

Tilly’s is the most actively bought by insiders

Struggling retailer Tilly’s (NYSE: TLYS) is the most actively bought by insiders, with a single owner making 39 purchases over the last year. The owner is Fund 1 Investments, LLC, a hedge fund headquartered in Puerto Rico. They own about 30% and are not the only large shareholders. 

Despite its struggles with relevancy in today’s consumer environment, this firm has eight holders in the 2% to 10% range that aren’t BlackRock (NYSE: BLK) or Vanguard, so there is significant interest in its assets if not its business. Institutions, hedge funds and insiders own 100% of this name; analysts rate it at a consensus Hold and see it trading below the low end of their range. 

TLYS stock chart

The three stocks with the most insiders buying shares are…

The stocks with the most insiders buying in 2023 are The Charles Schwab Company (NYSE: SCHW), NextEra Energy (NYSE: NEE) and Keurig Dr Pepper (NASDAQ: KDP). Each has seen its share price struggle, if for different reasons, opening up a value play for insiders and investors. Regarding insider activity, each has eight insiders buying shares in 2023, but the similarity in activity ends there. 

The Charles Schwab Company insiders bought the dip when share prices imploded during the banking crisis but have sold into the rally since. They may provide a headwind for investors. Keurig Dr Pepper insiders are buying and buying through the end of the year, but their purchases are offset by selling. Large shareholders are shedding shares, which may also provide a headwind.; KDP is in a decent position but struggling compared to pureplay peers in soda and coffee. NextEra Energy is the most promising from the insider trading perspective; its eight bought all year with little in the way of offsetting sales. 

Walmart is the most sold stock by dollar value in 2023

Believe it or not, Walmart (NYSE: WMT) is the most sold by insiders on a dollar basis in 2023. The company has nine insiders on record, making 80 sales for $5.4 billion. Sales were made by nearly every member of the C-suite and several large, family-oriented insiders, which may be a bearish sign for the retail market. However, the sales are less than 1.25% of the company's market cap in early 2024, and insiders still hold more than 46% of the company, so no red flag is given. With analysts leading the market higher, Walmart shares are in an uptrend, so new highs are possible this year. 

WMT stock chart

The most actively sold stock: Atlassian

Atlassian (NASDAQ: TEAM) is the most actively sold stock in 2023. The company had nine execs and insiders make more than 200 sales in 2023, aiding the stocks' struggle to gain traction. The insiders still own about 40% of the stock, so there is a risk this trend will continue in 2024. The stock trades at a high valuation, with growth slowing and below analysts' forecasts, so upside potential is limited. The analysts rate the stock at Hold but have cut the price target by 15% in the last 12 months. They see it trading near the high end of their range, another hurdle for the market. 

Atlassian stock chart

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