Curious how well insiders are doing with their buys? Click on this link or image above to scroll the significant buys of the last year.

All bear markets end in a crescendo, literally an explosion of insider buying.  I believe we are in a classic bear market.  The signposts are obvious.  Beat and raise quarters are met with yawns if not outright sell-offs. Good news is met with brief bouts of buying but soon dissipates into the underlying negative downward trend.  Of course, there are always stocks that work even in a bear market but it is much harder making money on the long side than it is on the short side.  Bear markets have become so rare that few people are willing to call one, instead, it’s a correction, yet another buying opportunity.  But buying the dips has not worked for several months. The challenge of course is no one rings a bell when the bear market is over. There is no all-clear sign given and investors rarely have the skill or luck to sit out a bear market in hope of getting back in when the tide changes.  I have found one indicator, that has predicted or coincident with the end of every bear market for the last twenty years.  That is the Insider Buy/Sell Filings Ratio. Note on the graph below.  the higher the blue line the more insider buying. The red line is the S&P 500.

Notice that prior to the market sell-offs ending, insiders are huge buyers of stock,  This makes a lot of sense because often the market is about people with confidence taking money from those that lack it. There is no more informed and therefore confident buyer than the corporate insider buying his own company’s stock. In the fall of 2008 and the Spring of 2009 insiders were snapping up their company’s stock, then again at the end of 2011 when Greece was close to default and there was talk about the Euro collapsing.  The S&P 500 in December 2018 fell more than 9% as investors feared a central bank ready to tighten monetary policy, a slowing economy, and an intensifying trade war between the U.S. and China. It marked the worst December since 1931.  At the end of 2015 and the beginning of 2016, with plunging oil prices, negative central bank rates, quantitative easing the market had a sharp but brief correction.  Insiders were buying. and the market resumed its upward trend.  Then again in March of 2020 when the extent of the global Pandemic was becoming clear and the market had three of its worst days in history, down 12% for the month.  This proved another historic buying opportunity all confirmed by waves of insider buying.   The answer to the obvious question is No, we are not at a moment where waves of insider buying would signal a market buying opportunity.

 

Finviz Chart

Name: Buffett Warren E Position: 10% Owner Transaction Date: 2022-03-02 Shares Bought: 61,351,818 Average Price Paid: $50.88 Cost: $3,121,739,167

Company: Occidental Petroleum Corp (OXY) Occidental Petroleum Corporation is an energy company. The Company conducts oil and gas exploration and production activities in the United States, the Middle East, and Africa. Within the United States, it has operations in Texas, New Mexico, and Colorado, as well as offshore operations in the Gulf of Mexico. The Company’s business segments include Oil and Gas, chemicals, Midstream, and Marketing. The Oil and Gas segment explores, develops, and produces oil and condensate, natural gas liquids (NGL), and natural gas. The Chemical segment manufactures and markets basic chemicals and vinyls. The Midstream and Marketing segment purchases, markets, gathers, processes, transports, and stores oil, condensate, NGL, natural gas, carbon dioxide (CO2), and power. It also trades around its assets, including transportation and storage capacity, and invests in entities that conduct similar activities. The Midstream and Marketing segment purchases, markets, gathers, processes, transports, and stores oil, condensate, NGL, natural gas, carbon dioxide (CO2), and power. It also trades around its assets, including transportation and storage capacity, and invests in entities that conduct similar activities.

Warren Buffett, the full name Warren Edward Buffett, is an American businessman and philanthropist who was born on August 30, 1930, in Omaha, Nebraska, United States. He is widely regarded as the most successful investor of the twentieth and early twenty-first centuries, having defied prevailing investment trends to amass a personal fortune of more than $100 billion. Buffett, also known as the “Oracle of Omaha,” was the son of Nebraska Congressman Howard Homan Buffett. He studied with Benjamin Graham at the Columbia University School of Business after graduating from the University of Nebraska with a B.S. in 1950. (M.S., 1951). Buffett returned to Omaha in 1956 and, in 1965, acquired a majority stake in textile maker Berkshire Hathaway Inc., which he used as his primary investment vehicle. The major stock averages soared by about 11% per year from the 1960s to the 1990s, but Berkshire Hathaway’s publicly listed shares increased by nearly 28% every year. Despite the fact that Berkshire Hathaway’s success made him one of the world’s wealthiest men, Buffett avoided extravagant spending and questioned government policies and taxation that favored the wealthy over the middle and lower classes.

Opinion: When Warren Buffet buys $3Billion of Oxy at this elevated price, it’s a strong sign that he thinks oil and gas are going to remain high. This is big news.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Morikis John G Position: CEO & Chairman Transaction Date: 2022-02-24 Shares Bought: 2,000 Average Price Paid: $259.55 Cost: $519,100

Company: Sherwin Williams Co (SHW) The Sherwin-Williams Company manufactures the highest-quality paints and coatings in the world. Every day, over 60,000 people offer the energy and experience needed to build on a successful track record, allowing them to innovate and expand in new and exciting ways. They provide industry-leading innovation, value-added service and expertise, and differentiated distribution to a growing base of professional, industrial, commercial, and consumer customers by putting people first. Sherwin-Williams offers one of the most well-known branded and private-label product collections in the business. Sherwin-Williams® branded products are distributed exclusively through a chain of 4,438 company-operated stores and facilities throughout the United States, Canada, the Caribbean, and Latin America. Leading mass merchandisers, home centers, independent paint dealers, hardware stores, automobile retailers, and industrial distributors sell more brands throughout North America, as well as parts of Europe, China, Australia, and New Zealand. They also provide a wide range of highly developed solutions in more than 120 countries for the construction, industrial, packaging, and transportation industry.

The Sherwin-Williams Company, a $17.9 billion global leader in the paint and coatings industry, is led by John G. Morikis as Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer. In January 2017, he was named Chairman of the Board, and in January 2016, he was named President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Mr. Morikis started his career as a Sherwin-Williams Management Trainee in 1984 and is the first graduate of the program to be named CEO. Mr. Morikis has held positions of increasing importance at the Company for more than 30 years, including President and General Manager of the Paint Stores Group and President and Chief Operating Officer. Mr. Morikis has had the honor of working alongside Sherwin-Williams’ great personnel as they have succeeded and built the company together over his tenure.

Opinion: The housing market has been strong and Sherwin Williams has been a huge beneficiary of this.  They have not been immune to rising input costs and clearly could have done a better job of managing this. In their latest earnings conference call, the CEO said “We are introducing full year adjusted diluted net income per share guidance of $9.25 – $9.65 per share, which represents 16.0% growth from 2021 at the mid-point,” said Mr. Morikis. “As we indicated in our mid-January announcement of preliminary results, demand remains strong across our end markets, though we expect raw material availability and COVID-related issues to persist through the first quarter. Given these near-term headwinds, we expect first quarter 2022 consolidated net sales will be up a low to mid-single digit percentage compared to the first quarter 2021. For the full-year 2022, we anticipate our consolidated net sales will increase by a high single digit to low double-digit percentage from 2021. We expect full year raw material costs to remain elevated but to moderate sequentially, and we will continue to implement pricing actions as appropriate to offset increased costs.” This would be great results for most companies but the reality of it is that SHW got so overpriced like so many stocks that it will take further price compression before we can get into the blue-chip housing play. SHW trades at a P/E of 37.08 TTM  This is not a name you will see private equity circling around either.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Akbari Dr. Homaira Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-02-24 Shares Bought: 2,000 Average Price Paid: $151.30 Cost: $302,601

Company: Landstar System Inc (LSTR) Landstar System, Inc. was incorporated in January 1991 under the laws of the State of Delaware. It acquired all of the capital stock of its predecessor, Landstar System Holdings, Inc. Landstar System is a US truckload freight carrier with a fleet of around 17,000 third-party trailers including flatbed, step decks, drop decks, low boys, refrigerated, and standard dry vans. Its fleet is primarily operated by independent contractors under exclusive contracts and its services are marketed by sales agents. Landstar’s freight carrier units transport general commodities and goods such as automotive products, building materials, chemicals, electronics, metals, foodstuffs, machinery retail, as well as military equipment. Customers include third-party logistics providers and government agencies such as the US Department of Defense. In addition to truckload transportation, Landstar offers logistics and customs brokerage services. In March 1991, Landstar acquired LSHI in a buy-out organized by Kelso & Company, Inc. Investors in the acquisition included Kelso Investment Associates IV, L.P., an affiliate of Kelso, ABS MB Limited Partnership, an affiliate of DB Alex. Brown LLC formerly known as Alex. Brown & Sons Incorporated, as well as certain company executives. Landstar completed a recapitalization in March 1993, which included an initial public offering of Common Stock at a price of $13.00 per share, adjusted for subsequent stock splits to $1.625 per share, the retirement of all outstanding 14 percent Senior Subordinated Notes, and the refinancing of the Company’s then-existing senior debt facility with a senior bank credit agreement.

Dr. Homaira Akbari is President and CEO of AKnowledge Partners, LLC, a global strategy advisory firm providing services to leading private equity funds and large corporations in the sectors of Internet of Things, Cyber Security, Big Data, Analytics, and Supply Chain Visibility. She serves on the Board of Directors of several Fortune 500 companies including Banco Santander S.A., Landstar System, Inc., Gemalto N.V., and Veolia. Dr. Akbari has held top management positions in Fortune 1000 organizations such as Microsoft, Thales, SA, and Trueposition, a Liberty Media company. Dr. Akbari has led SkyBitz, Inc., a leading provider of remote asset tracking and security solutions, as President and CEO. The corporation experienced a record year under her leadership. SkyBitz was successfully sold to Telular Corporation by her (NASDAQ: WRLS). She graduated from Tufts University with a Ph.D. in particle physics and the Carnegie Mellon Tepper School of Business with honors.

Opinion: Landstar has been one of the most successful private equity deals I’ve seen. We’re watching this one closely. It’s reasonably priced with a good balance sheet and improving fundamentals. It’s entirely possible that private equity might do a redo and take this one private again.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Kelly Thomas Francis Position: Vice President Transaction Date: 2022-02-25 Shares Bought: 1,800 Average Price Paid: $141.74 Cost: $255,130

Company: Celanese Corp (CE) The Celanese Corporation began as a tiny business with a basic concept and grew into a multibillion-dollar conglomerate. Celanese’s fortunes and character altered as the commercial world changed. Celanese’s leadership lost its single-minded goal as it battled to guide the complex and vulnerable organization it had constructed as the company grew. Dr. Camille E. Dreyfus and his brother, Dr. Henri Dreyfus, created the American Cellulose and Chemical Manufacturing Company in 1918. The Celanese Corporation was established in 1927. Camille Dreyfus was president of the organization from 1918 to 1945, when he became chairman of the board. Acetyl Chain and Materials Solutions, use the full breadth of Celanese’s global chemistry, technology, and business expertise to create value for our customers. Based in Dallas, Texas, Celanese has approximately 7,700 employees worldwide and had 2019 net sales of $6.3 billion. Through its global production network of more than 40 manufacturing facilities, Celanese provides specialty materials critical to the automotive, paints and coatings, medical, pharma, consumer goods, electrical and electronics, industrial, and food ingredients industries, among others. Thomas F. Kelly has served as our Vice President of Corporate Development since September 2016. From 2012 until joining us, Mr. Kelly served as the Director of Global Raw Materials Procurement for Celanese Corporation. Prior to that, he held various roles at Chemtura Corporation, culminating in the Vice President of New Business Development and the Program Management Organization from 2010 to 2012, and the Vice President of Product Management, Operations, and Integration Planning from 2008 to 2010. Mr. Kelly held various senior business operations, product management, and supply chain assurance positions for us from 1999 through 2008. He received a B.S. and an M.S. in Chemical Engineering from Villanova University, and an M.B.A. from Drexel University.

Opinion: On February 18th  DuPont (DD) announced it has entered into a definitive agreement with Celanese (CE) to divest a majority of the mobility and materials segment including the Engineering Polymers business line and select product lines within the Performance Resins and Advanced Solutions business lines for $11B in cash, subject to customary transaction adjustments in accordance with the definitive agreement, which represents an enterprise value multiple of ~14x 2021 operating EBITDA. Combined, these businesses generated net sales of approximately $3.5B and operating EBITDA of approximately $0.8B in 2021. The cash tax rate on the sale to Celanese is expected to be in the mid to high-single digits. Celanese has received fully committed financing in connection with the transaction. The transaction is expected to close around the end of 2022, subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals. DuPont is separately advancing the process to divest the Delrin business which was included in the scope of the strategic review process the company announced on November 2, 2021. The Delrin business generated net sales of approximately $0.55B and operating EBITDA of approximately $0.18B in 2021. The company is targeting a closing date for the sale of Delrin in the first quarter 2023. Given the uncertainty that a major transaction like this presages, I’d have to see more than one insider buying into this.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Loudermilk Robert C JR Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-02-25 Shares Bought: 824 Average Price Paid: $121.60 Cost: $100,198

Company: Genuine Parts Co (GPC) Name: Holder John R Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-02-24 Shares Bought: 2,200 Average Price Paid: $118.86 Cost: $261,492

Company: Genuine Parts Co (GPC) Founded in 1928, Genuine Parts Company is a global service organization engaged in the distribution of automotive and industrial replacement parts. Genuine Parts Company is a service company engaged in the distribution of automotive and industrial replacement parts. The Company operates through two segments: Automotive Parts and Industrial Parts. The Automotive Parts segment distributes replacement parts (other than body parts) for substantially all makes and models of automobiles, trucks, and other vehicles. The Industrial Parts segment distributes a variety of industrial bearings, mechanical and fluid power transmission equipment, including hydraulic and pneumatic products, material handling components and related parts and supplies. The Company’s Automotive Parts Group operates in the United States, Canada, Mexico, France, the United Kingdom, Germany, Poland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Australia, and New Zealand. Its Industrial Parts Group operated in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, and Singapore. It operates through the following segments: Automotive, Industrial, Office Products, and Electrical/Electronic Materials. The Automotive segment distributes replacement parts, other than body parts for substantially all makes and models of automobiles, trucks, and other vehicles.

Genuine Parts Company’s Independent Director is Mr. Robert C. Robin Loudermilk, Jr. Since January 1, 2012, he has served as President and Chief Executive Officer of The Loudermilk Companies, LLC, a real estate management firm. From 1997 to November 2011, he was President of Aarons Inc., furniture, electronics, and home appliance retailer, and from 2008 to November 2011, he was Chief Executive Officer of Aarons Inc. He also worked for Aarons Inc. in a variety of capacities, including as Chief Operating Officer from 1997 until 2008. Mr. Loudermilk has also served on the board of directors of Aarons Inc.

The Company’s Independent Director is John R. Holder. Holder Properties, a commercial and residential real estate development, leasing, and management company based in Atlanta, has named him Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Holder has served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the company since 1989. He is also a director and member of the Audit Committee of Oxford Industries, Inc. His service as the Chairman and CEO of Holder Properties, together with various board affiliations, including as director and Audit Committee member of publicly traded Oxford, Industries, Inc., an apparel company, have given him leadership experience, business acumen, and financial literacy that is beneficial to our Board and Compensation, Nominating and Governance Committee. The estimated Net Worth of John R Holder is at least $2.38 Million dollars as of 24 February 2022. Mr. Holder owns over 2,200 units of Genuine Parts Co stock worth over $2,123,006 and over the last 13 years he sold GPC stock worth over $0. In addition, he makes $261,806 as Independent Director at Genuine Parts Co.

Opinion: Token buys nothing to get excited about.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Panayiotou Stacey J. Position: VP Transaction Date: 2022-02-28 Shares Bought: 6,000 Average Price Paid: $88.91 Cost: $533,454

Company: BALL Corp. (BLL) Ball Corporation is an American company headquartered in Broomfield, Colorado. It is best known for its early production of glass jars, lids, and related products used for home canning. Since its founding in Buffalo, New York, in 1880, when it was known as the Wooden Jacket Can Company, the Ball company has expanded and diversified into other business ventures, including aerospace technology. It eventually became the world’s largest manufacturer of recyclable metal beverage and food containers. The Ball brothers renamed their business the Ball Brothers Glass Manufacturing Company, incorporated in 1886. Its headquarters, as well as its glass and metal manufacturing operations, were relocated to Muncie, Indiana, by 1889. The business was renamed the Ball Brothers Company in 1922 and the Ball Corporation in 1969. It became a publicly-traded stock company on the New York Stock Exchange in 1973. The ball left the home canning business in 1993 by spinning off a former subsidiary (Alltrista) into a free-standing company, which renamed itself Jarden Corporation. As part of the spin-off, Jarden is licensed to use the Ball registered trademark on its line of home-canning products. Today, the Ball brand mason jars and home canning supplies belong to Newell Brands.

Stacey Valy Panayiotou is the Executive Vice President, Human Resources of Graphic Packaging Holding Company. Joined GPI on April 22, 2019, from The Coca-Cola Company, where she held a variety of senior HR leadership roles, including Global Vice President of Talent and Development and Vice President, HR, Europe, Middle East & Africa, which consisted of over 120 countries. Prior to her global talent position, served as Vice President of Talent and Development, Organizational Effectiveness, and Diversity and Inclusion and Learning for the Coca-Cola North America Group. Prior to that, served as Vice President of HR for the West business unit of Coca-Cola Enterprises, Inc. (CCE) and worked in corporate HR with The Coca-Cola Company. Prior to Coca-Cola, Led the organizational development function for Pactiv Corporation and worked for the Fort James Corporation

Opinion: Ball insiders have been steady buyers of stock. I just can’t get excited about a company that is in aluminum cans and aerospace. It just seems too disconnected to me.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Smach Thomas J Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-03-03 Shares Bought: 5,000 Average Price Paid: $78.04 Cost: $390,194

Crocs Inc (CROX) Name: Treff Douglas J Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-03-03 Shares Bought: 9,600 Average Price Paid: $77.96 Cost: $748,389

Company: Crocs Inc (CROX) Crocs, Inc., is a Colorado maker of unique clogs that became extremely popular in the early 2000s with both men and women. The inexpensive shoes rely on a proprietary closed-cell resin material called Croslite to produce a lightweight, slip-resistant, odor-resistant, non-marking sole. The material also softens with body heat, thus molding the shoe to the foot of the wearer and providing a comfortable fit. Originally intended for use on boats and in other outdoor activities like hiking, fishing, and gardening, Crocs has also found a market with working people who spend a lot of time in their feet, such as health care and restaurant workers. Moreover, Crocs, generally considered an ugly shoe, has attracted the attention of celebrities, thereby making them fashionable. The shoe features a removable back strap available in 20 colors. In some circles, essentially younger girls, these straps are traded among wearers to provide a different look. Because of their broad appeal, Crocs are available through numerous distribution channels: traditional footwear retailers, sporting goods and outdoor retailers, department stores, uniform suppliers, specialty food retailers, gift shops, health and beauty stores, and catalogs. The company also sells the shoes on its Web site and in kiosks located in places with heavy foot traffic. In addition to the United States, Crocs are sold in more than 40 countries. Beyond its signature clogs, Crocs has taken steps to extend its brand to include clothing, hats, sunglasses, gardening kneepads, and other products. The company maintains manufacturing facilities in Canada, Italy, Mexico, and China. Crocs is a public company listed on the NASDAQ.

Mr. Smach is currently the Chairman of Crocs, Inc., as well as the Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Riverwood Capital Management LP. Pinnacle Holding Co. LLC, Technisys SA, Supply Chain Resources Group, Inc., and Industrious National Management Co. LLC .Thomas J. Smach previously served as Chief Financial Officer of Flex Ltd., Chief Financial Officer of Flextronics International, Inc., and Chief Financial Officer, Treasurer, and Senior Vice President of The DII Group, Inc. (both are subsidiaries of Flex Ltd.). Mr. Smach graduated from the State University of New York with a bachelor’s degree. Mr. Smach is a certified public accountant. From 1997 to April 2000, he served as the Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer of The Dii Group, Inc., an EMS provider and publicly-traded company that merged with Flextronics in early 2000. In addition to currently serving on the board of various private companies around the world, Mr. Smach also served on the board of various public companies in both the United States and Germany.

Douglas J. Treff is on the board of Crocs, Inc. He previously was Chief Financial Officer & Senior Vice President at Deluxe Corp., Chief Financial Officer of PreVu, Inc. and Chief Financial Officer & Vice President for Wilsons The Leather Experts, Inc. (a subsidiary of PreVu, Inc.), Chief Administrative Officer & Executive VP at Payless Holdings LLC and Chief Administrative Officer & Executive VP at Payless ShoeSource, Inc. (a subsidiary of Payless Holdings LLC), Chief Administrative Officer & Executive VP at Sears Canada, Inc. and Chief Financial Officer, Director & Senior VP at World Vision, Inc.

Opinion: I thought retro-grade shoe company, Crox was gone but it has made a comeback and is now quite the rage. Fashion is fickle, though. On February 16th, CROC announced Q4 revenue and Q1 guidance. “Reports Q4 revenue $586.6M, consensus $585.02M. “A strong 2021 holiday season completed a very successful year for our brand. We achieved incredible results with record revenues of $2.3B, 67% revenue growth and industry-leading 30% operating margin,” said CEO Andrew Rees. “Our fourth straight year of revenue growth was fueled by continued strong consumer demand for the Crocs brand globally. We are excited about our sustainable growth trajectory for both the Crocs and HEYDUDE brands and are confident in our plan to grow to $6B in revenues by 2026.” This is the kind of name with brand recognition and balance sheet, cash flow that P.E firms will be circling if that price stays in this realm. We are buyers.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Silberman Robert S Position: Chairman Transaction Date: 2022-02-28 Shares Bought: 13,001 Average Price Paid: $60.24 Cost: $783,181

Company: Strategic Education Inc. (STRA) Strategic Education, Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides post-secondary education and non-degree programs. It operates in three segments: Strayer University, Capella University, and Australia/New Zealand. The company operates Strayer University that provides undergraduate and graduate degree programs in business administration, accounting, information technology, education, health services administration, public administration, and criminal justice for working adult students through its 64 physical campuses located in the eastern United States, as well as through online; and an executive MBA online through its Jack Welch Management Institute. It also operates a software development school that provides Web development, iOS development, quality assurance, and UX design programs in Lehi, Utah, and Dallas, Texas online; and a software engineering school for women, which offers software development programs online in San Francisco. In addition, the company operates Capella University, an online post-secondary education company that offers bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degree programs in public service leadership, nursing and health sciences, psychology, business and technology, counseling and human services, and education primarily for working adults; and provides self-paced online general education courses. Further, it operates Torrens University that offers undergraduate and graduates courses in business, design and creative technology, health, hospitality, and education fields through online and on physical campuses located in Australia; Think Education, a vocational training organization that delivers education at various campuses; and Media Design School, which offers industry-endorsed courses in 3D animation and visual effects, game art and programming, graphic and motion design, digital media artificial intelligence, and creative advertising in New Zealand.

The company was founded in 1892 and is headquartered in Herndon, Virginia. Robert S. Silberman joined the Company in 2001 and served as its Chief Executive Officer from 2001 to 2013. He served as Chairman of the Board from 2003 to 2013 and has been Executive Chairman since 2013. Earlier in his career, Mr. Silberman served as President and Chief Operating Officer of CalEnergy Company, a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway, Inc. (NYSE: BRK). He is a Managing Director of Equity Group Investments and serves as the Chairman of the Board of Par Pacific Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: PARR); as well as the Lead Director of the Board of Covanta Holdings Corporation (NYSE: CVA). Mr. Silberman was appointed by President George H.W. Bush as the U.S. Assistant Secretary of the Army and served in other senior positions in the U.S. Department of Defense from 1989 to 1993. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Opinion: This is a tough business and we are on the sidelines.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Voorhees Steven C Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-03-02 Shares Bought: 10,000 Average Price Paid: $59.80 Cost: $598,000

Company: Truist Financial Corp. (TFC) Truist Financial Corporation, a holding company, provides banking and trust services in the Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic United States. The company operates through three segments: Consumer Banking and Wealth, Corporate and Commercial Banking, and Insurance Holdings. Its deposit products include non-interest-bearing checking, interest-bearing checking, savings, and money market deposit accounts, as well as certificates of deposit and individual retirement accounts.

As of December 31, 2020, the company operated through 2,781 banking offices. The company was formerly known as BB&T Corporation and changed its name to Truist Financial Corporation in December 2019. Truist Financial Corporation was founded in 1872 and is headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Voorhees’ deep and varied business experience, including as a current CEO of a Fortune 500 company and his past experience as a CFO of a large, publicly-traded corporation, will provide significant leadership insight and extensive financial reporting and accounting expertise to the SunTrust board. Voorhees is the chief executive officer of WestRock, a leading provider of differentiated paper and packaging solutions with more than 45,000 employees and more than 300 operating and business locations in North America, South America, Europe, and Asia. Prior to his current role, Voorhees served in various executive leadership roles, including president and chief operating officer; executive vice president and chief financial officer; and chief administrative officer at WestRock and a predecessor, RockTenn. Before joining RockTenn, he was in operations and executive roles at Sonat Inc., a diversified energy company headquartered in Birmingham, Ala.

Opinion: Bank stocks have gotten caught up in this tug of war between the Fed’s desire to raise rates and the global market’s flight to safety and the U.S. Treasury market is driving down rates.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Tang Vance W Position: Director Transaction Date: 2021-09-14 Shares Bought: 10,000 Average Price Paid: $52.95 Cost: $529,500

Company: American Woodmark Corp. (AMWD) American Woodmark is a kitchen and bath cabinet manufacturer, headquartered in Winchester, Virginia. The company operates 9 manufacturing facilities, in Arizona, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia, and 9 builder service centers across the country. American Woodmark Corporation manufactures and distributes kitchen, bath, and home organization products for the remodeling and new home construction markets in the United States. It offers made-to-order and cash and carries products. The company also provides turnkey installation services to its direct builder customers through a network of eight service centers. American Woodmark Corporation sells its products under the American Woodmark, Timberlake, Shenandoah Cabinetry, Waypoint Living Spaces, Estate by RSI, Continental Cabinets, VillaBath by RSI, Stor-It-All, and Professional Cabinet Solutions brands, as well as Hampton Bay, Glacier Bay, Style Selections, Allen + Roth, Home Decorators Collection, and Project Source. It markets its products directly to home centers and builders, as well as through independent dealers and distributors. The company was incorporated in 1980 and is based in Winchester, Virginia. American Woodmark produces and distributes high quality face frame kitchen and bath cabinetry through a variety of channels, including remodeling, new construction, and specialty dealers. Cabinets are offered in a wide range of colors and materials from the Appalachian region. All cabinets are assembled in the US in one of four assembly plants throughout the country. Tang joined the Board of Directors in 2009 and has served as non-executive chairman since 2020. Additionally, he served as president and chief executive officer of the U.S. subsidiary of KONE Corporation, a Finnish public company and a leading global provider of elevators and escalators, and executive vice president of KONE Corporation from 2007 to 2012. Presently, he acts as director of Comfort Systems USA, a publicly-traded provider of commercial and industrial specialty contracting including HVAC, electrical, security, and building automation installation and services, and president of VanTegrity Consulting focusing on leadership and growth strategies, both positions he has held since 2012. Tang’s 29-y materials. They are vertically integrated and source the majority of their hardwood raw ear career in the industry has been highlighted with leadership roles in operations. Mr. Tang’s former experience as a chief executive officer in the construction industry provides the Board with a valuable strategic perspective.

Opinion: It’s hard to imagine how a major cabinet maker could not have managed this great homebuying cycle better but American Wordworks is that rare loser amongst a homebuilding party. Maybe they are turning it around.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Moskovitz Dustin A Position: CEO Chairman 10% Owner Transaction Date: 022-02-24 Shares Bought: 750,000 Average Price Paid: $50.51 Cost: $37,882,367 Company: Asana Inc. (ASAN) Asana is a web and mobile application designed to help teams organize, track, and manage their work. Forrester, Inc. reports that “Asana simplifies team-based work management. Asana helps teams orchestrate their work, from small projects to strategic initiatives. Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, Asana has more than 100,000 paying customers and millions of free organizations across 190 countries. Global customers such as Amazon, Japan Airlines, Sky, and Under Armour rely on Asana to manage everything from company objectives to digital transformation to product launches and marketing campaigns. Asana, Inc. offers a work management platform. The Company’s platform enables teams to orchestrate work, from daily tasks to cross-functional strategic initiatives. With its solution, Asana enables individuals to manage and prioritize across each of the projects. Its solution enables individuals to collaborate with teammates and have visibility into each team member’s responsibilities and progress. The Asana solution aids the team leads to manage work across a portfolio of projects or processes. The Company enables executives to communicate company-wide goals, monitor status, and oversee work across projects to gain real-time insights into which initiatives are on track or at risk. Asana is powered by its multidimensional data model called the work graph. The work graph captures and associates work units, the people responsible for executing those units of work, the processes in which work gets done, information about that work, and the relationships across and within the data. Dustin Moskovitz is the co-founder and CEO of Asana. As Asana’s CEO, Dustin is dedicated to creating a product that helps the world’s teams collaborate effortlessly, in addition to leading the company’s award-winning culture. Prior to founding Asana, Dustin co-founded Facebook and served as the company’s first Chief Technology Officer and VP of Engineering.

Opinion: There’s been no insider that has bought more stock than Dustin Moskovitz. we’ve blogged on this numerous times. It’s hard to say what he could be thinking but the general counsel and the CFO are selling the stock.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Urdang E Scott Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-03-01 Shares Bought: 5,516 Average Price Paid: $45.37 Cost: $250,261 Company: Gaming & Leisure Properties Inc (GLPI) GLPI elected on its U.S. federal income tax return for the taxable year beginning on January 1, 2014, to be treated as a REIT and intends to continue to be organized and to operate in a manner that will permit it to qualify as a REIT. The Company’s primary business consists of acquiring, financing, and owning real estate property to be leased to gaming operators in “triple net” lease arrangements. GLPI expects to grow its portfolio by pursuing opportunities to acquire additional gaming facilities to lease to gaming operators, which may or may not include Penn. GLPI also anticipates diversifying its portfolio over time by acquiring properties outside the gaming industry to lease to third parties. The expertise of GLPI’s management team will allow the Company to secure additional avenues for growth beyond the gaming industry and allow it to pursue other acquisitions that may prove complementary to GLPI’s gaming facilities. The Company’s portfolio includes Argosy Casino Alton, Ameristar Black Hawk, Hollywood Casino Aurora, Hollywood Casino Joliet, Belterra Casino Resort, and Hollywood Casino Lawrenceburg. Scott is a founder of Urdang Securities Management, Inc., Urdang Capital Management, Inc., CenterSquare Investment Management Holdings, Inc., and CenterSquare Investment Management, Inc., E. Scott Urdang is an entrepreneur is on the board of Gaming & Leisure Properties, Inc. and GLP Capital LP. He has previously held the positions of Partner at Horwath Velez & Co. PSC, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer at Urdang Capital Management, Inc., Chairman at CenterSquare Investment Management, Inc., Chairman at Urdang Securities Management, Inc., and Professor at the University of Pennsylvania. Scott Urdang holds a bachelor’s degree from Tufts University as well as an MBA and a doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School.

Opinion: It’s been a tough year for gaming properties as the reopening play got hit with Omicron and the end of the Covid stimulus plans. There has definitely been pent-up demand but online gaming is also a cross current.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Whitmore Justin Position: Chief Strategy Officer Transaction Date: 2022-02-25 Shares Bought: 6,355 Average Price Paid: $37.72 Cost: $239,711

Company: Keurig Dr Pepper Inc (KDP) With annual revenue exceeding $11 billion and nearly 26,000 employees, Keurig Dr. Pepper (KDP) is a leading beverage company in North America. KDP is a market leader in soft drinks, specialty coffee and tea, water, juice, juice drinks, and mixers, as well as the #1 single-serve coffee brewing machine in the United States and Canada. Keurig®, Dr. Pepper®, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters®, Canada Dry®, Snapple®, Bai®, Mott’s®, CORE®, and The Original Donut Shop® are among the Company’s more than 125 owned, licensed, and partner brands, which are designed to meet almost any customer demand, at any moment. KDP can bring its line of hot and cold beverages to practically every point of purchase for consumers thanks to its extensive sales and distribution network. The Company is committed to sourcing, producing, and distributing its beverages responsibly through its Drink Well. The company, formerly Dr Pepper Snapple Group, is one of North America’s largest beverage companies with more than 125 owned, licensed, and partner brands. It owns the top single-serve coffee system in the US (Keurig) and one of the US’s leading soft drinks (Dr. Pepper), as well as Green Mountain coffee, Canada Dry, A& W root beer, Snapple tea and juice, and Mott’s fruit juice, among many other products.

KDP operates facilities across North America. The company serves major retailers in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. Their largest retailer was Walmart, representing approximately 15% of sales in 2020. The majority of the company’s sales were generated in the US.

Justin Whitmore serves as Chief Strategy Officer for Keurig Dr. Pepper. Prior to joining the Company in 2021, Justin held enterprise strategy, venture, general management, and operations leadership roles at Tyson Foods, most recently as Executive Vice President, Alternative Protein, and previously as Executive Vice President, Corporate Strategy and Chief Venture and Sustainability Officer. He has also worked extensively with leading consumer packaged goods companies as a management consultant at McKinsey & Company. Justin earned his bachelor’s degree in Management from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and his MBA from the Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame. He’s been designated an EatingWell Magazine “American Food Hero,” one of Savoy Magazine’s Most Influential Blacks in Corporate America, and one of Black Enterprise Magazine’s 300 Most Powerful Executives in Corporate America. Justin is a member of the Executive Leadership Council and the Corporate Advisory Board at Notre Dame’s business school.

Opinion:  KDP has been a slow and boring investment until the recent outperformance of the defense consumer staples group. I give all the credit to the market rotation and not the management. Frankly I don’t like this stock.

 

Finviz Chart

Name: Joung Chansoo Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-02-25 Shares Bought: 40,000 Average Price Paid: $32.92 Cost: $1,316,992

Company: APA Corp (APA) APA Corporation’s companies operate in the United States, Egypt’s Western Desert, the United Kingdom’s the North Sea, and offshore Suriname, with exploration potential. The beliefs, commitment to producing shareholder value, and culture, which empowers every employee to make decisions and achieve the company’s goals, have brought our team together since 1954. A sense of ownership and the awareness that the best responses win bring our worldwide team together. We aim to maximize shareholder returns while also assisting in the fulfillment of global energy needs and establishing novel, more sustainable business models. In areas of operation, we strive to be a community partner, focusing on the safety and health of our employees, communities, and the environment. In 2021, Apache Corporation moved to a holding company structure under APA Corporation, the public company trading on the Nasdaq stock exchange. APA acquired the Suriname and Dominican Republic subsidiaries from Apache. Apache Corporation is a direct, wholly-owned subsidiary of APA and continues to hold assets in the U.S., subsidiaries in Egypt and the U.K., and economic interests in Altus Midstream Company and Altus Midstream LP.

Joung Chansoo, joined the Company’s Board of Directors in February 2011. He chairs the Audit Committee and is a member of the Corporate Responsibility, Governance, and Nominating Committee. From 2005 to 2015, Mr. Joung was a partner and then senior advisor at Warburg Pincus LLC. He was responsible for making and monitoring investments in all sectors of the energy industry, including upstream, gas and gas liquids processing and transportation, and electric power. He was also responsible for global coordination of the firm’s renewables activities, including wind, solar, biofuels, and grid storage. Mr. Joung has been a member of the board of directors of the general partner of Magellan Midstream Partners, L.P. since May 2019 and serves on its compensation committee and nominating and governance committee. He is also an advisory director on the advisory board of Pickering Energy Partners LP.

Opinion:  You don’t normally see insiders buying at 52-week highs but then again you don’t normally see Warren Buffett buying $3billion of Occidental. Not all oil and gas insiders are hanging on to their stock at these record prices. There is quite a bit of profit-taking going on. It does make me want to hang on to all the oil and gas positions. We like CTRA and EQT, both mentioned favorably in this week’s Barrons.

 

Finviz Chart

Name: Asbill Richard Brandon Position: General Counsel Transaction Date: 2022-02-28 Shares Bought: 3,000 Average Price Paid: $30.78 Cost: $92,336

Name: Raiford Daryl Position: CFO Transaction Date: 2022-02-28 Shares Bought: 9,760 Average Price Paid: $30.73 Cost: $299,931

Company: Bandwidth Inc (BAND) Bandwidth is a software company that’s transforming the way people communicate and challenging the standards of old telecom. Together with their customers, they’re unlocking remarkable value, questioning the status quo, and helping people interact with technology and one another, oftentimes in ways, they never dreamed possible. Haven’t heard of Bandwidth? You’ve probably used one of the products before. Thir power some of the most important communications technologies on the market today—names like Google, Skype, and Ring Central to name a few. At Bandwidth, they’ve got a passion for doing things the other way—imagining what they could be and uncovering opportunities to take a new approach to create what should be. They’re out to disrupt the century-old rules of the telecom industry—and that means doing things differently in every area of our business. It’s in the way we treat our people, and how we create with our customers.

Asbill Richard is a global senior executive and public company CFO. He has a track record of generating growth and scaling enterprises in software/SaaS, telecoms, and technology across numerous sectors. Extensive experience in strategic M&A, treasury activities, tax planning, accounting and reporting, internal audit, and investor relations, as well as extensive experience in creating and improving global finance teams. Coaching and developing high-performing, highly engaged teams have been proven to be successful. He has worldwide public business experience and a track record of scaling growth in a variety of industries, including software, telecommunications, and technology. Raiford is the Chair of the Audit Committee and a member of the Board of Directors of Leone Media Inc., which operates under the name MediaKind. He possesses a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting from The University of Texas and is a Certified Public Accountant at Austin.

Opinion:  Someone tell me where the bottom is, please? I don’t think these cloud plays can stabilize until they turn cash flow positive.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Kim Lorence H Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-02-25 Shares Bought: 30,000 Average Price Paid: $30.03 Cost: $900,849

Company: Cowen Inc. (COWN) Cowen Inc., together with its subsidiaries, provides investment banking, research, sales and trading, prime brokerage, global clearing, securities financing, commission management, and investment management services in the United States and internationally. It operates in two segments, Operating Company (Op Co) and Asset Company (Asset Co). The company offers public and private capital raising and strategic advisory services for public and private companies. It also trades common stocks, listed options, equity-linked securities, and other financial instruments on behalf of institutional investor clients. In addition, the company offers investment products and solutions in the liquidity spectrum to institutional and private clients, as well as provides investment research services. Further, it is involved in private investment, private real estate investment, and other legacy investment activities. Cowen Inc. was founded in 1918 and is headquartered in New York, New York.

Dr. Lorence H. Kim is the former Chief Financial Officer of Moderna Inc. and a Venture Partner at Third Rock Ventures LLC. Cowen, Inc., Abata Therapeutics, Inc., Flare Therapeutics, Inc., and American Red Cross, Inc. all have him on their boards of directors. Dr. Kim previously worked at Seres Therapeutics, Inc. as an Independent Director, Moderna, Inc. as Chief Financial Officer, and Goldman Sachs & Co. as a Managing Director. He graduated from Harvard University with a bachelor’s degree, an MBA from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, a Ph.D. from the Perelman School of Medicine, and a doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine.

Opinion:  Kim must have spent half or more of his life in school. Investment banks and securities companies are hard to analyze without a deep understanding of the balance sheet. Unfortunately, I have to discount Kim’s purchase a bit as he just got appointed as a director but $900k is more than the call of duty perfunctory director buy requires.  COWN looks incredibly cheap, trading below book, single-digit multiple of free cash flow, and P.E. I think you have to buy some here. It’s far cheaper than its peers by every matrix.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Hoover R David Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-02-28 Shares Bought: 10,000 Average Price Paid: $28.83 Cost: $288,323

Company: Elanco Animal Health Inc. (ELAN) Elanco Animal Health Incorporated, an animal health company, innovates, develops, manufactures, and markets products for pets and farm animals. It offers pet health disease prevention products, such as parasiticide and vaccine products that protect pets from worms, fleas, and ticks under the Seresto, Advantage, Advantix, and Advocate brands; pet health therapeutics for pain, osteoarthritis, ear infections, cardiovascular, and dermatology indications in canines and felines under the Galliprant and Claro brands; vaccines, antibiotics, parasiticides, and other products for use in poultry and aquaculture production, as well as functional nutritional health products, including enzymes, probiotics, and prebiotics; and a range of vaccines, antibiotics, implants, parasiticides, and other products used in ruminant and swine production under the Rumensin and Baytril brands. The company sells its products to third-party distributors; veterinarians; and farm animal producers, including beef and dairy farmers, as well as pork, poultry, and aquaculture operations in approximately 90 countries in North America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Latin America, and the Asia-Pacific. Elanco Animal Health Incorporated was founded in 1954 and is headquartered in Greenfield, Indiana.

R. David Hoover is Independent Chairman at Elanco Animal Health, Inc. He is also on the board of DePauw University (former Chairman), Children’s Hospital Colorado, O-Web Technologies Ltd., and Boulder Community Hospital and Member of The Colorado Forum. In the past, he occupied the position of Chairman at Ball Corp. and Vice Chairman & Chief Financial Officer at Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. (a subsidiary of Ball Corp.), Member of Can Manufacturers Institute, Inc., and Member-Deans Council at Kelley School of Business.

Opinion: Elanco Animal Health Incorporated (ELAN) came out with quarterly earnings of $0.21 per share, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $0.17 per share. This compares to earnings of $0.12 per share a year ago. These figures are adjusted for non-recurring items. This quarterly report represents an earnings surprise of 23.53%. A quarter ago, it was expected that this company would post earnings of $0.17 per share when it actually produced earnings of $0.19, delivering a surprise of 11.76%.

Over the last four quarters, the company has surpassed consensus EPS estimates four times and it has done nothing for the stock. I know this as we patiently own it waiting for something I do not know.  Hoover has bought over $1M worth of stock and several insiders have been accumulating. Eventually this is going to work and probably pretty well from these levels.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Fadel Mitch E Position: CEO Transaction Date: 2022-03-01 Shares Bought: 40,000 Average Price Paid: $27.08 Cost: $1,083,200

Company: Rent A Center Inc De. (RCII) Rent-A-Center, Inc. and its subsidiaries lease durable household goods to customers on a lease-to-own basis. The company operates in four segments: Rent-A-Center Business, Preferred Lease, Mexico, and Franchising. It offers furniture and accessories, appliances, consumer electronics, computers, tablets and smartphones, tools, tires, handbags, and other accessories under rental purchase agreements. The company also provides merchandise on an installment sales basis; and the lease-to-own transaction to consumers who do not qualify for financing from the traditional retailer through kiosks located within the retailer’s locations. It operates retail installment sales stores under the Get It Now and Home Choice names; lease-to-own and franchised lease-to-own stores under the Rent-A-Centre, ColorTyme, and RimTyme names; and rentacenter.com, an e-commerce platform. As of December 31, 2020, the company owned and operated approximately 1,845 stores in the United States and Puerto Rico, including 44 retail installment sales stores; 45 preferred lease staffed locations in North Carolina; and 121 stores in Mexico, as well as franchised 462 lease-to-own stores in 33 states. Rent-A-Center, Inc. was founded in 1960 and is headquartered in Plano, Texas.

Since June 2017, Mr. Fadel has been a member of our board of directors, and on January 2, 2018, he was named Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Fadel was self-employed before joining the Company, having previously worked for EZCORP, Inc., a leading provider of pawn loans in the United States and Mexico, as President Of U.S. Pawn from September 2015 to December 2016. Mr. Fadel previously served as the Company’s President (starting in July 2000) and Chief Operating Officer (starting in December 2002) until August 2015, as well as a director from December 2000 to November 2013. Mr. Fadel served as President and CEO of the Company’s subsidiary Rent-A-Center Franchising International, Inc. f/k/a ColorTyme, Inc. from 1992 until 2000. Mr. Fadel’s professional experience with the Company also includes previously serving as a Regional Director and a District Manager.

Opinion:  Not a great business in an economic downturn which I believe is looming from the rapid rise in inflation which will disproportionately hurt Rent-A-Center’s customer base.

Finviz Chart Name: Stewart Alan R Position: CFO Transaction Date: 2021-09-14 Shares Bought: 20,000 Average Price Paid: $26.34 Cost: $526,863

Company: Shotspotter Inc. (SSTI) ShotSpotter Inc. is a Newark, California-based company known for its gunfire locator technology, sold to law enforcement. It is traded on NASDAQ under SSTI and began in 1996. ShotSpotter, Inc. provides precision-policing and security solutions for law enforcement and security personnel in the United States, South Africa, and the Bahamas. Its solutions include ShotSpotter Respond, a public safety solution, which serves cities and municipalities to identify, locate, and deter gun violence by incorporating a real-time gunshot detection system into their policing systems; and ShotSpotter Connect, a patrol management software to help plan directed patrols and tactics for crime deterrence. The company also provides ShotSpotter SecureCampus and ShotSpotter SiteSecure that helps the law enforcement and security personnel serving universities, corporate campuses, big-box retail, malls, and key infrastructure or transportation centers to mitigate risk and enhance security by notifying authorities of an outdoor gunfire incident and saving minutes for first responders to arrive.

In addition, it offers ShotSpotter Investigate, a cloud-based investigative platform to help law enforcement agencies modernize every phase of an investigation and accelerate casework with easy-to-use software tools. Further, it provides ShotSpotter Labs, a technology to adapt and extend commercial technology to address significant wildlife and environmental issues. The company sells its solutions through its direct sales teams.

Alan R. Stewart serves as Chief Financial Officer bringing a strong background in mergers, acquisitions, and corporate finance to the company. Prior to joining ShotSpotter, Stewart served as Managing Director of RA Capital Advisors, LLC, a private investment bank specializing in mergers and acquisitions, private financings, and restructurings. From 2004 to 2014, he served as Chief Financial Officer and then Chief Development Officer of Epsilon Systems Solutions, Inc. Since 2008, Mr. Stewart has served as President of FIT Advisors, LLC, a boutique consulting firm that offers temporary CFO services and served clients from start-up ventures to large private companies in vertical industries spanning government contracting, software, retail, healthcare IT, banking and Internet application.

Opinion:  This is a very niche business but the technology is very cool. For 2020, their two largest customers, City of Chicago and City of New York, accounted for 18% and 15% of their revenues, respectively.  Is it another AXON? That’s the sizzle of course but the market for what ShotSpotter refers to as “precision policing” isn’t all that big – a $2 billion total addressable market (TAM). I just don’t see the acceleration in revenue that would make me think this is an explosive disruptive technology takeup but I am very interested in this company and it could be a big mover if they can put out a few quarters of big growth.  This purchase by Stewart is his largest since becoming the CFO in 2017.

Finviz Chart Name: Nada Hany M Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-03-02 Shares Bought: 50,000 Average Price Paid: $23.28 Cost: $1,164,000

Company: DraftKings Inc. (DKNG) DraftKings Inc. is a digital sports entertainment and gaming company created to fuel the competitive spirit of sports fans with products that range across the daily fantasy, regulated gaming, and digital media. Headquartered in Boston, and launched in 2012 by Jason Robins, Matt Kalish, and Paul Liberman, DraftKings is the only U.S.-based vertically integrated sports betting operator. DraftKings is a multi-channel provider of sports betting and gaming technologies, powering sports and gaming entertainment for operators in 17 countries. DraftKings’ Sportsbook is live with mobile and/or retail betting operations in the United States pursuant to regulations in Arizona, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming. DraftKings’ daily fantasy sports product is available in 7 countries internationally with 15 distinct sports categories. DraftKings is the official daily fantasy partner of the NFL, MLB, NASCAR, PGA TOUR, and UFC as well as an authorized gaming operator of the NBA and MLB, an official sports betting partner of the NFL, an official betting operator of PGA TOUR, and the official betting operator of UFC. Launched in August 2021, DraftKings Marketplace is a digital collectibles ecosystem designed for mainstream accessibility that offers curated NFT drops and supports secondary-market transactions. DraftKings also owns Vegas Sports Information Network, Inc. (VSiN), a multi-platform broadcast and content company. Hany M. Nada, a venture capitalist, co-founded ACME Capital in January 2019 and is one of the firm’s partners. Mr. Nada co-founded GGV Capital LLC (previously Granite Global Ventures, “GGV”), a venture capital firm, in 2000 and served as a Managing Director from 2000 to October 2016 and as a Venture Partner from November 2016 to October 2018. Mr. Nada was a Managing Director and Senior Research Analyst at Piper Sandler & Co. f/k/a Piper Jaffray & Co, an investment banking business that specialised in Internet software and e-infrastructure, prior to co-founding GGV. Mr. Nada currently serves as a member of the board of directors of several companies, including Glu Mobile (NASDAQ: GLUU) (since April 2005), in which he sits on the audit committee, compensation committee and strategy committee; ArchByte (since December 2019); and DraftKings (since December 2013), and was previously on the board of directors of Vocera Communications, Inc. and Tudou, both publicly traded companies. In addition, Mr. Nada is an observer on the board of directors of Houzz, Inc, IonQ and Uhnder. Mr. Nada received his B.S. in Economics and his B.A. in Political Science from the University of Minnesota

Opinion:   Draft Kings is synonymous with Fantasy football and now internet gambling on sports. The Supreme Court struck down a 1992 federal law in May of 2018 that effectively banned commercial sports betting in most states, opening the door to legalizing the estimated $150 billion in illegal wagers on professional and amateur sports that Americans make every year. The promise of untold riches ignored the reality that many people would be in the game and at the end of the day this would be a war for market share. It remains to be seen who the real winner is here as everyone wants in on the action.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Pope Gregory S Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-03-01 Shares Bought: 20,000 Average Price Paid: $22.61 Cost: $452,300

Company: EVO Payments Inc (EVOP) EVO Payments, Inc. is among the largest, fully integrated merchant acquirers and payment processors in the world. We are at the forefront of payment technologies that make fast, secure global credit and debit card processing more efficient and cost-effective for merchants, ranging from micro-enterprises to multinational companies and financial organizations throughout North America and Europe. With nearly 30 years of payments expertise, EVO supports all major card types in the markets we serve. Evo Payments, Inc. is located in Atlanta, GA, United States and is part of the Activities Related to Credit Intermediation industry. Evo Payments, Inc. has 2,400 total employees across all of its locations and generates $496.64 million in sales (USD). There are 42 companies in the Evo Payments, Inc. corporate family.

Gregory S. Pope has served as a member of our board of directors since May 2018. Mr. Pope has served as Chief Operations Officer at Masters Capital Management LLC, or Masters Capital, an investment management firm, since June 2000. Prior to joining Masters Capital, Mr. Pope worked for J.C. Bradford & Co. from 1989 until July 2000. Mr. Pope previously served on the board of directors for Georgia Commerce Bancshares, Inc. and was a member of its audit and an asset-liability committee from 2011 until 2015. Mr. Pope currently serves on the board of directors of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Atlanta and is a past board member of several other charitable foundations. Mr. Pope received a Bachelor of Science degree in Finance from Georgia State University.

Opinion:  I think a lot of the bloom is off the rose in fintech and in particular the payments industry. I would not pay up for this business as the Company hasn’t grown revenues since 2017.

 

Finviz Chart Name: D’Orazio Frank Position: CEO Transaction Date: 2022-03-02 Shares Bought: 50,000 Average Price Paid: $20.64 Cost: $1,031,865

Name: Abram J Adam Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-03-03 Shares Bought: 12,500 Average Price Paid: $20.32 Cost: $254,059

Name: Srinivasan Sundar Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-03-03 Shares Bought: 24,000 Average Price Paid: $20.39 Cost: $489,463

Company: James River Group Holdings, Ltd (JRVR) James River Group Holdings, Ltd. (“James River Holdings”, or “the Company”) is a Bermuda-based insurance holding company that owns and operates a group of specialty insurance and reinsurance companies. For the year ended December 31, 2020, approximately 70% of the group-wide gross written premiums originated from the U.S. excess and surplus (“E&S”) lines market. Substantially all of the business is casualty insurance and reinsurance, and for the year ended December 31, 2020, it derived 97% of the group-wide gross written premiums from casualty insurance and reinsurance. Their objective is to generate compelling returns on tangible equity while limiting underwriting and investment volatility.

Mr. D’Orazio became the Chief Executive Officer of James River Group Holdings in November 2020. Mr. D’Orazio worked for Allied World Assurance Company Holdings, AG., a specialty insurer, and reinsurer, from 2003 to 2020, in different executive positions, most recently as Chief Operating Officer and Chief of Staff. At the same organization, Mr. D’Orazio previously served as President, Underwriting and Global Risk, President, International Insurance, Chief Underwriting Officer, and Senior Vice President, Global Product Manager for General Casualty. Prior to joining Allied World, Mr. D’Orazio worked at Munich Reinsurance America, Inc. as a Regional Vice President, Global Risk Management. Mr. D’Orazio got his start in the insurance industry with The Chubb Group. Mr. D’Orazio graduated from Fairfield University with a B.A. in Political Science and American Studies.

Adam Abram is the founder, chairman, and CEO of James River Group, LTD, an insurance holding company that underwrites casualty and reinsurance. Yadkin Financial Corporation, which owns and manages North Carolina’s largest community bank, was formed by him in 2009. Yadkin’s Lead Independent Director is him. Adam is also a trustee of The Urban Institute and chairman emeritus of the Board of Visitors at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy.

Mr. Sundar Srinivasan is the company’s Independent Director. From 2007 until 2012, he was a member of our Board of Directors. Mr. Srinivasan has been Chief Executive Officer of Emerald Lake Safety, a pharmaceutical research firm he created, since 2016. Mr. Srinivasan was also the managing partner of Brookline Advisors LLC, an investment advisory firm that advises significant institutional clients, from 2013 to 2016. Mr. Srinivasan worked as a portfolio manager at Elliott Associates, a multi-strategy investment firm, from 2003 to 2012, and before that as a Vice President of investment banking at Morgan Stanley, specializing in financial institutions

Opinion: Large capital underwriting losses of the past are supposedly behind the company. Insiders sure act that way and we would take a chance on this name as it has no European reinsurance exposure as far as we can tell.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Bell Paul D Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-02-25 Shares Bought: 12,500 Average Price Paid: $20.20 Cost: $252,500

Company: Toast Inc (TOST) Toast, Inc. operates a cloud-based technology platform for the restaurant industry in the United States and Ireland. It offers Toast Point of Sale (POS), a hardware product; Toast Order & Pay, which allows guests to order and pay from their mobile devices; Toast Flex that is used for on-counter order and pay, as well as used as a server station, guest kiosk, kitchen display system, or order fulfillment station; Toast Go, a handheld POS device that enhances the table turn times through tableside ordering and payment acceptance; and Toast Tap, a card reader that supports NFC, EMV, and MSR payments. The company also provides kitchen display system software that connects the front of the house with the kitchen staff; multi-location management software, which allows customers to manage and standardize their operations and configure menus; xtraCHEF by Toast, a restaurant-specific invoice management software; and Toast Flex for Kitchen, a larger format mountable piece of hardware that can be used as a kitchen screen. In addition, it offers Toast Online Ordering & Toast TakeOut app, a software that connects online channels, point of sale, menu management, and kitchen operations in real-time; First-Party Delivery services for restaurants to manage a fleet of drivers, and customize delivery hours, zones, fees, and minimum ticket sizes; Toast Delivery Services, which enables restaurants to utilize a partner network of delivery drivers; and Toast Delivery Partners services.

Paul Bell owns over 12,500 units of Toast stock worth over $888,230

Opinion:  I went out to dinner tonight and paid my bill on the restaurant’s TOST app. I would not touch the stock until the have positive operating margins.

Finviz Chart Name: DeGaynor Jonathan B Position: CEO Transaction Date: 2022-03-03 Shares Bought: 12,560 Average Price Paid: $19.37 Cost: $243,287

Company: Stoneridge Inc (SRI) Stoneridge, Inc. is a designer and manufacturer of highly engineered electrical and electronic systems, components, and modules for the automotive, commercial vehicle, motorcycle, agricultural, and off-highway vehicle markets, with a focus on the automotive, commercial vehicle, motorcycle, agricultural, and off-highway vehicle markets. Stoneridge, Inc. is a designer and manufacturer of designed electrical and electronic components, modules, and systems for use in automobiles, commercial vehicles, off-highway vehicles, motorcycles, and agricultural vehicles. Control Devices, Electronics, and Stoneridge Brazil are the company’s three segments. Its Control Devices sector develops and manufactures products that monitor, measure, and activate specific vehicle operations. Actuators, sensors, switches, and connectors are among the product lines included in this area. Its Electronics segment designs and manufactures driver information systems, camera-based vision systems, connectivity, and compliance products, and electronic control units. Its Stoneridge Brazil segment designs manufacture, and sells vehicle tracking devices and monitoring services, vehicle security alarms and convenience accessories, in-vehicle audio and infotainment devices, and telematics solutions primarily for the automotive and motorcycle markets.

In March 2015, Jonathan DeGaynor was named president and chief executive officer. Since May 2015, he has been a director. Prior to joining Stoneridge, DeGaynor worked for Guardian Industries Corp., as vice president of strategic planning and innovation. Guardian is a maker of industrial glass and other building products for commercial, residential, and automotive applications. DeGaynor worked for SRG Global, Inc., a Guardian company that manufactures chrome-plated parts for the automotive, commercial vehicle, and consumer goods industries, as vice president, business development, and managing director of Asia from 2008 to 2014. From 2005 to 2008, DeGaynor was the chief operating officer of Autocam Corporation, a manufacturer of precision machine components for the automobile industry. Prior to that, DeGaynor held positions of increasing responsibility with Delphi Corporation from 1993‐to 2005. Jonathan has made over 8 trades of the Stoneridge stock since 2018, according to Form 4 filed with the SEC. Most recently he bought 12,560 units of SRI stock worth $243,287 on 3 March 2022.

Opinion: The company has not been able to grow revenues since 2017. Why would you buy it? Well if you were named the CEO, and business sucked this bad, I guess you would have to take one for the team.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Zeisser Michael P Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-02-24 Shares Bought: 14,332 Average Price Paid: $16.19 Cost: $232,006

Company: LendingClub Corp (LC) LendingClub Corporation is a bank holding company. The Company operates through its subsidiary LendingClub Bank, National Association (the Bank). Its customers can gain access to a range of financial products and services designed to help them digitally manage their lending, spending, and savings. It offers a range of products and services aimed at supporting its members and further improving their financial health. The Company offers products and services to commercial customers, as well as to the range of institutional investors for its unsecured personal loans and auto loans (Consumer Loans), and for its patient and education finance loans. For depositors, it offers digital experience features, such as automated teller machine (ATM) fee rebates, rewards and interest rates. Its commercial lending business includes commercial and industrial loans, commercial real estate loans, small business loans and equipment loans and leases.

Michael Zeisser is the Managing Partner of FMZ Ventures, a growth equity investment fund specializing in experience economy companies and consumer marketplaces. Until April 2018, he was Chairman, of U.S. Investments for Alibaba Group and led Alibaba’s strategic investments outside of Asia. Mr. Zeisser joined Alibaba in 2013 prior to its historic IPO and as Alibaba’s most senior executive in the Americas. Before Alibaba Group, Mr. Zeisser spent almost a decade working at Liberty Media Corporation, where he led investments in digital media, online gaming, and commerce. Prior to joining Liberty Media in 2003, he was a partner at McKinsey & Company in New York. Mr. Zeisser has considerable governance experience. He currently serves on the boards of several privately held companies and has previously served on the boards of Trip Advisor, IAC, TIME Inc., Shutterfly, and XO Group. Mr. Zeisser graduated from the University of Strasbourg, France, and the J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.

Opinion: Unless you like investing like you’re on a roller coaster ride, I think we can pass on Lending Club. It’s another company that has been unable to grow revenues since 2017.

Finviz Chart Name: Griggs Stephen P Position: CEO Transaction Date: 2022-03-03 Shares Bought: 32,342 Average Price Paid: $15.44 Cost: $499,506

Company: AdaptHealth Corp. (AHCO) AdaptHealth Corp., together with its subsidiaries, provides home healthcare equipment, medical supplies, and home and related services in the United States. The company provides sleep therapy equipment, supplies, and related services, such as CPAP and bi-PAP services to individuals suffering from obstructive sleep apnea; home medical equipment (HME) to patients discharged from acute care and other facilities; oxygen and related chronic therapy services in the home; and other HME medical devices and supplies on behalf of chronically ill patients with diabetes care, wound care, urological, ostomy, and nutritional supply needs. It serves beneficiaries of Medicare, Medicaid, and commercial payors. The company is headquartered in Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania. They are a network of full-service medical equipment companies that use customized products and services to empower patients to live their best lives — out of the hospital and in their homes. With operations in 47 states, They can offer a breadth of clinically driven products and services designed to help patients adapt to life in the home, including sleep and respiratory therapy, diabetes management supplies, mobility products, wound care, non-invasive ventilation, and nutrition. Using innovation, technology, best-in-class processes, and decades of experience, They can think outside the box and deliver an enhanced high-quality experience to their patients and healthcare professionals.

Steve Griggs was named CEO of AdaptHealth in June 2021. He joined the Company as co-CEO following the 2021 acquisition of AeroCare. Mr. Griggs founded AeroCare in 2000 and led the organization as CEO. Prior to AeroCare, Mr. Griggs served as CFO, COO and President of Rotech Medical Corporation. He began his career as a CPA and later served as controller for a tourist and entertainment conglomerate in Orlando, FL, where he led the financial turnaround efforts. Mr. Griggs holds a B.S.B.A in Business Management from East Tennessee State University and a B.S.B.A. in Accounting from University of Central Florida.

Opinion: Avoid like the plague. The whole CPAC market is a scam in my opinion. Organic growth for the fourth quarter was 2.7% and non-acquired growth was 2.4% despite continued pressure on the supply of CPAP devices largely due to the Philips Respironics recall. Griggs better by buying some stock since the share prices has lost 50% since he was appointed CEO

Finviz Chart Name: Sullivan Marianne Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-02-24 Shares Bought: 15,650 Average Price Paid: $15.02 Cost: $235,115

Company: PennyMac Mortgage Investment Trust (PMT) PennyMac Financial Services, Inc. is a specialty financial services firm with a comprehensive mortgage platform and integrated business focused on the production and servicing of U.S. mortgage loans and the management of investments related to the U.S. mortgage market. PennyMac Financial was founded in 2008 by members of the executive leadership team and two strategic partners, BlackRock Mortgage Ventures, LLC and HC Partners, LLC, formerly known as Highfields Capital Investments, LLC. Since then, they have built what they believe is an industry-leading operational platform to pursue business opportunities in the U.S. mortgage market.

Ms. Sullivan has been a member of our Board since September 2017. Since January 2017, Ms. Sullivan has served as founder and chief strategy consultant of OptimX Advisors, Inc., a consulting firm in the U.S. mortgage industry. Prior thereto, Ms. Sullivan served for 24 years in a variety of executive positions including senior vice president, single-family strategic initiatives and business capabilities, and senior vice president, single-family chief risk officer at Fannie Mae, a government-sponsored enterprise (GSE) that partners with lenders to create housing opportunities for families across the country. Ms. Sullivan currently serves on the boards of directors of Finicity, a non-public company that provides financial aggregation services to the financial services industry, and Ardley Technologies, Inc., a non-public company providing software to the mortgage industry. Ms. Sullivan received a B.S. degree in Business Administration with a concentration in accounting from Georgetown University.

Opinion:  This is the first insider buying in a year of nonstop selling.

Finviz Chart Name: Bratspies Stephen B Position: CEO Transaction Date: 2022-02-24 Shares Bought: 34,292 Average Price Paid: $14.63 Cost: $501,569

Company: Hanesbrands Inc (HBI) In the Americas, Europe, Australia, and Asia-Pacific, HanesBrands, founded in Winston-Salem, N.C., is a socially responsible leading seller of everyday basic innerwear and activewear apparel. Hanes, Champion, Maidenform, DIM, Bali, Playtex, Bonds, JMS/Just My Size, Nur Die/Nur Der, L’eggs, Lovable, Wonderbra, Berlei, and Gear for Sports are some of the company’s most recognizable apparel brands. T-shirts, bras, panties, shapewear, underwear, socks, hosiery, and sportswear are among the items sold by the company, which is known for its low-cost worldwide supply chain. Hanes is a member of the S&P 500 stock index and employs roughly 68,000 people in over 40 countries. It is ranked No. 432 on the Fortune 500 list of America’s largest corporations by sales.

Stephen B. Bratspies was elected Chief Executive Officer and appointed to the Board of Directors in August 2020. Immediately prior to joining the company, Mr. Bratspies served as Chief Merchandising Officer since 2015 for Walmart Inc., a publicly-traded multinational retail company that operates a chain of supercenters, discount stores, grocery stores, and warehouse clubs. He served in various capacities at Walmart since 2005, including as Executive Vice President, Food, from 2014 to 2015, and as Executive Vice President, General Merchandise, from 2013 to 2014. Mr. Bratspies earned an MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, and a B.A. in Economics from Franklin and Marshall College.

Opinion:  Hanesbrands is a shrinking company with no brand loyalty. They compete on price and will have a tough time passing costs on to its customer in my opinion.

Finviz Chart Name: Fogarty Kevin Michael Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-02-28 Shares Bought: 25,000 Average Price Paid: $13.40 Cost: $335,034

Company: Glatfelter Corp (GLT) Glatfelter Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, manufactures and sells engineered materials worldwide. It operated through two segments, Composite Fibers, and Airlaid Materials. The company’s Composite Fibers segment offers food and beverage filtration materials for single-serve coffee and tea products; wall cover base materials for wallpaper manufacturers; metalized products that are used in labels, packaging liners, gift wrap, and other consumer product applications; composite laminate, consisting of decorative laminates for use in furniture, household and commercial flooring, and other applications; and specialty engineered products, which are used in electrical energy storage, homecare, hygiene, and other engineered fiber-based applications. Its Advanced Airlaid Materials segment supplies absorbent cellulose-based air-laid nonwoven materials that are used to manufacture consumer products, such as feminine hygiene and other hygiene products, specialty wipes, tabletop, adult incontinence, home care, and other consumer and industrial products. The company markets its products directly, as well as through brokers and agents. The company was formerly known as P. H. Glatfelter Company. Glatfelter Corporation was founded in 1864 and is headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Kevin Michael Fogarty holds the position of President, Chief Executive Officer & Director at Kraton Corp., and Chief Executive Officer & Director at Kraton Polymers U.S. LLC (a subsidiary of Kraton Corp.). He is also on the board of Glatfelter Corp. and American Chemistry Council, Inc. He previously was President-Polymer & Resins at INVISTA BV and President-Polymer & Intermediaries Business at KoSa BV. He received an undergraduate degree from Dalhousie University. The largest trade he’s ever made was exercising 87,768 units of Kraton Corp stock on 2 January 2018 worth over $1,269,125. On average, Kevin trades about 12,866 units every 62 days since 2009. As of 28 February 2022 he still owns at least 25,000 units of Kraton Corp stock.

Opinion:  Something terrible happened to GLT on February 10th. They reported 4th quarter earnings. Glatfelter Corporation (NYSE: GLT), a leading global supplier of engineered materials, today reported a loss from continuing operations for the fourth quarter of 2021 of $11.2 million, or $0.25 per share, compared with net income of $9.1 million, or $0.20 per share, in the same period a year ago. The 2021 results prospectively include the acquisitions of Georgia-Pacific’s U.S. nonwovens business (“Mount Holly”) and Jacob Holm (“Spunlace”) as of May 13, 2021 and October 29, 2021, respectively.  GLT is pretty hihgly leveraged and I don’t feel comfortable dibbing the toe in the water here.  I need more insider buying to boost my confidence level.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Grasberger F Nicholas III Position: CEO & Chairman Transaction Date: 2022-02-28 Shares Bought: 25,000 Average Price Paid: $11.92 Cost: $298,000

Company: Harsco Corp (HSC) Harsco Corporation solves the most complex environmental challenges worldwide, from properly disposing of medical waste to repurposing slag. Through thoughtful partnerships with customers around the globe, the recycling and repurposing services keep millions of tons of material out of landfills and incinerators. The Clean Earth division is one of the largest providers of environmental and regulated waste management services in the country. The Environmental division is the most comprehensive provider of onsite material processing and environmental services to the global metals industry, with operations at over 130 customer sites across more than 32 countries. The Harsco Rail division builds and maintains rail lines from the Swiss Alps to the Amazon rainforest. The core values Employee Care, Passion for Winning, Satisfy the Customer, Inclusion, and Respect guide our 12,000 employees across 35 countries as we work hard to provide quality service and innovative solutions to our customers.

As Chairman & CEO at Harsco, he leads 10,000+ employees across 35 countries. The world’s leading steelmakers, rail companies, and energy producers look to support the safe, reliable delivery of environmentally responsible products and services to the global marketplace. Harsco Corp. announced that F. Nicholas Grasberger III, President, and Chief Executive Officer, has been elected Chairman of the Board of Directors, effective immediately. Mr. Grasberger succeeds David C. Everitt, who has served as Non-Executive Chairman since August 2014 and a director since 2010. Mr. Everitt has been appointed independent Lead Director

Opinion: I need more than a paltry $300k worth of buying when your stock drops 40%. Step up the plate Grasberger and put your money where your mouth is or find someone else to lead HSC.

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Name: Kabnick Lisa Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-03-01 Shares Bought: 143,470 Average Price Paid: $7.02 Cost: $1,007,159

Company: Necessity Retail REIT Inc (RTL) The Necessity Retail REIT, Inc., formerly American Finance Trust, Inc., is a real estate investment trust (REIT). The Company is focused on acquiring and managing a diversified portfolio of primarily service-oriented and traditional retail and distribution-related commercial real estate properties located primarily in the United States. Its assets consist primarily of freestanding single-tenant properties and other creditworthy tenants, and a portfolio of multi-tenant retail properties consisting primarily of power centers and lifestyle centers. The Company’s business is operated through American Finance Operating Partnership, L.P., and its wholly-owned subsidiaries. The Company owns approximately 939 properties, consisting of 19.9 million rentable square feet, and 33 multi-tenant retail properties. The asset management team’s superior execution, excellent retail leasing experience, and long-standing relationships with national retailers deliver strong leasing results for RTL. The asset managers are hands-on leaders and work to ensure that shopping centers have a complementary mix of national brand anchors and local retailers creating a place where the community prefers to shop.

Lisa D. Kabnick is on the board of American Finance Trust, Inc., Philadelphia Inquirer & Daily News, Philadelphia Media Network LLC, and Ongava Game Reserve. Ms. Kabnick previously occupied the position of Partner at Reed Smith LLP, Partner at Pepper Hamilton LLP, Co-Chairman at CEB, Inc., and Ex-Officio Trustee at The Philadelphia Museum of Art. Independent director of the Company since August 2015. Mrs. Kabnick has served as AFIN’s nominating and corporate governance committee chair since April 2016 and also has served as a lead independent director since March 2018.

Opinion: Seriously? Who is getting excited about a 2% REIT dividend? Not me.

Finviz Chart Name: Pittman Raymond J Position: CEO Transaction Date: 2022-02-24 Shares Bought: 40,000 Average Price Paid: $6.80 Cost: $272,130

Name: Hebert Peter Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-02-24 Shares Bought: 20,000 Average Price Paid: $6.38 Cost: $127,500

Company: Matterport Inc (MTTR) Matterport is at the forefront of the built-digital environment’s change. Our ground-breaking spatial computing technology converts buildings into data, enhancing the value and accessibility of every location. Millions of buildings in over 150 countries have been converted into immersive Matterport digital twins to improve all aspects of the building lifecycle, from planning to construction to operations, documentation, appraisal, and marketing. Matterport is the world’s top spatial data company, specializing in the digitization and indexing of the built environment. Anyone can turn a space into an exact and immersive digital twin that can be used to plan, create, run, promote, and comprehend any location using our all-in-one 3D data platform.

Peter is Co-Founder of Lux Capital and focuses on investments in technology and energy. Peter began his career at Lehman Brothers, where he worked in the Firm’s top-ranked Equity Research group. In 2000, he co-founded Lux Capital. In 2003, Peter led the spin-off of Lux Research. As founding CEO, he helped build Lux Research into the leading emerging technology research firm. Peter launched the publicly-listed Lux Nanotech Index (AMEX: LUXNI) and the $150 million PowerShares Lux Nanotech Portfolio (NYSE: PXN). Mr. Hébert started his career at Lehman Brothers, where he was a member of the firm’s top-ranked Equity Research team. He was a Chancellor’s Scholar at Syracuse University’s Newhouse School and graduated with honors.

Opinion:  Very cool technology. Very niche. Very small insider buys.

Finviz Chart Name: Linscott Brian Position: CEO Transaction Date: 2022-02-28 Shares Bought: 34,100 Average Price Paid: $6.55 Cost: $223,447

Company: Harte Hanks Inc (HHS) Harte Hanks, Inc. is a multi-faceted direct marketing firm that provides a variety of services to customers all around the world. Data analysis, strategy planning, and market research are among the company’s specializations. Founded by Houston Harte and Bernard Hanks as a newspaper publishing company, the corporation has since expanded to include television and radio stations. It formed a direct marketing sector in the 1970s, which was in charge of targeted mailings, shopper advertising, telemarketing, and websites with searchable databases of shopper ads. As the newspaper sector stagnated in the 1990s, the corporation began to devote more resources to its direct marketing division, eventually selling off its remaining newspaper and other media holdings to the E.W. Scripps Company in 1997. Today, Harte-Hanks, Inc. serves a range of clients in the retail, financial, pharmaceutical, technology, and health industries. Houston Harte, owner of the San Angelo Standard, and Bernard Hanks, owner of the Abilene Reporter, met for the first time at a publishers’ meeting in Dallas in the early 1920s. Their papers, located only 90 miles apart, had for years competed fiercely in the primarily rural areas where their territories overlapped. Harte-Hanks added several more newspapers, all based in Texas, during the 1930s and 1940s. In 1945 the partners took on their first corporate employee, Bruce Meador, who would later become a trustee of Hanks’s estate. Bernard Hanks died in 1948. By then, the second generation–Houston H. and Ed Harte, and Andrew Shelton–was already learning the newspaper trade. Brian Linscott works as a Chief Executive Officer at Harte Hanks, which is an Advertising & Marketing company with an estimated 2,500 employees; and was founded in 1923. They are part of the Executive team within the C-Suite Department and their management level is C-Level. Brian graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and is currently based in San Antonio, United States. Mergers and Acquisitions, Restructuring and Turnaround Advisor and former CFO focused on improving stakeholder value, financial performance, and operational efficiency using collaborative strategic planning, structured execution, and effective communication to drive results.

Opinion:  Harte Hanks used to be a powerhouse in coupon advertising. The world has changed and I don’t know if HHS has been able to change with it. Their revenue has been collapsing over the last four years and I don’t see how they survive. This is definitely window dressing before the final swan song.

Finviz Chart Name: VanDevender Aaron Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-02-28 Shares Bought: 50,000 Average Price Paid: $6.35 Cost: $317,699

Company: Applied Molecular Transport Inc (AMTI) AMT is leveraging its propriety technology platforms to create gastrointestinal (GI)-select therapeutics that harness naturally occurring transport and targeting mechanisms to cross the protective barrier of the intestinal epithelium (IE). Once across the IE, the therapeutics gain privileged access to the immune cell-rich environment of the GI tissue as well as the hepatic portal system and downstream systemic circulation. With this privileged access, AMT’s goal is to develop transformative new oral therapeutic treatment options that offer patients greater efficacy and tolerability than available with today’s therapeutics. AMT has a robust pipeline of oral biologic product opportunities, including AMT-101 which is currently in Phase 1b clinical development for the treatment of adults with ulcerative colitis (UC). AMT-101 is a novel, gut-selective, investigational oral biologic fusion protein of interleukin 10 (IL-10), an anti-inflammatory cytokine. Derived from AMT’s proprietary platforms, AMT-101 is engineered to cross the selective barrier of the IE and enhance localized IL-10 directly within the immune-cell-rich environment of GI tissue where up to 75 percent of immune cells reside. This direct targeting of the immune system creates the potential for AMT-101 to address, at its point of origin, the immune dysregulation that gives rise to UC and other inflammatory bowel diseases, and restore immune homeostasis with minimal systemic exposure, and potentially fewer adverse events compared to systemic administration of IL-10. Dr. VanDevender joined our board of directors in November 2016. Since February 2020, Dr. VanDevender has served as Chief Scientific Consultant at Founders Fund, LLC, a venture capital firm and from November 2012 to February 2020, Dr. VanDevender served as Chief Scientist and Principal at Founders Fund, LLC. From October 2010 to March 2012, Dr. VanDevender served as a physicist at Halcyon Molecular, Inc., a company focused on DNA sequencing technology. From October 2007 to September 2010, he worked as a physicist at the National Institute of Standards and Technology. Dr. VanDevender holds a BS in Physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Opinion:  I’d rather have a root canal than buy another small-cap biotech. This is as bad a bear market for small-cap biotech as I’ve ever seen. The only way any names work is here if they are bought out. In other words lose money almost every day with the hopes of one day making it all back and more. No thanks.

 

Finviz Chart Name: Black Jeffrey G Position: CFO Transaction Date: 2022-02-25 Shares Bought: 40,000 Average Price Paid: $5.73 Cost: $229,100

Company: Apollo Endosurgery Inc (APEN) Apollo Endosurgery, Inc. is a medical technology company, which is focused on the development of medical devices to advance gastrointestinal therapeutic endoscopy. The Company develops and distributes devices that are used by surgeons and gastroenterologists for various procedures related to gastrointestinal conditions including the closure of gastrointestinal defects, managing gastrointestinal complications, and the treatment of obesity. The Company’s products include the OverStitch Endoscopic Suturing System, which enables advanced endoscopic procedures from within the Gastrointestinal tract, or endoluminal, by allowing physicians to suture, especially full-thickness, and secure the approximation of tissue. The X-Tack Endoscopic HeliX Tracking System is a suture-based device designed specifically for closing and healing defects in the lower gastrointestinal tract. The Orbera Intragastric Balloon System is a non-surgical alternative for interventional weight loss.

Jeffrey G. Black was named Chief Financial Officer in August 2021. Mr. Black has served in senior finance leadership roles for seven publicly-traded companies, most recently as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Alphatec Holdings, Inc, a medical technology company. Previously, Mr. Black was Chief Financial Officer of Applied Proteomics, Inc, a non-invasive, proteomics-based diagnostics company, and as Chief Financial Officer of AltheaDx, Inc., a pharmacogenetics diagnostics company. A strategic and operational senior executive with more than 30 years of experience in corporate strategy, finance, and operations, primarily with publicly-traded companies in the medical device, diagnostics, life sciences, high technology/software, and industrial biotech. Hands-on manager with a heavy emphasis on fund-raising, investor relations, roadshow / IPO-readiness, corporate governance, financial and strategic planning, budgeting and cost containment, operational efficiencies, contract negotiation, M&A support and integration activities, GAAP accounting, SEC compliance and reporting, staff development, facilities, and IT management.

Opinion:  Shrinking sales and growing share count is not a recipe for success. Avoid.

Finviz Chart Name: Sloan Harry Position: Director Transaction Date: 2022-02-28 Shares Bought: 94,880 Average Price Paid: $3.10 Cost: $293,720 Company: Skillz Inc. (SKLZ) Skillz is the leading mobile games platform that connects players in fair, fun, and meaningful competition. The Skillz platform helps developers build multi-million dollar franchises by enabling social competition in their games. Leveraging its patented technology, Skillz hosts billions of casual esports tournaments for millions of mobile players worldwide and distributes millions in prizes each month. The company is headquartered in San Francisco and backed by leading venture capitalists, media companies, and professional sports leagues and franchises. Skillz has earned recognition as one of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies, CNBC’s Disruptor 50, Forbes’ Next Billion-Dollar Startups, and the #1 fastest-growing company in America on the Inc. 5000. Skillz is built on the foundation that fair competition should be accessible to everyone. Skillz is pioneering the future of interactive entertainment in an increasingly digital era by connecting the world’s 2.6 billion mobile gamers through a highly engaging, competitive experience on their mission to make gaming better for both players and developers.

Harry E. Sloan was the founding investor, Chief Executive Officer, and Chairman of Flying Eagle Acquisition Corp. (NYSE: FEAC). Harry was also a founding investor of Diamond Eagle Acquisition Corp. (Nasdaq: DEAC) and previously served as chairman and chief executive officer of Silver Eagle Acquisition Corp. until the consummation of its business combination in March 2015 with Videocon d2h Limited (“Videocon”) (Nasdaq: VDTH). Harry has served on the board of directors of Videocon and as chairman and chief executive officer of Global Eagle Acquisition Corp. and remains a director of Global Eagle Entertainment Inc. Prior to this, Harry served as chairman and chief executive officer of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc., or MGM, and chairman and chief executive officer of SBS Broadcasting, S.A. (“SBS”) (Nasdaq: SBTV), which he founded in 1990. Prior to founding SBS Broadcasting, S.A., Harry was chairman of the board of Lions Gate and co-chairman of New World Entertainment Ltd. Harry currently serves on the boards of Promotora de Informaciones, S.A. (“PRISA”) (NYSE: PRIS), and ZeniMax Media Inc.

Opinion:  Let’s see if we can buy and aggregate some of the lamest games out there, throw it into a SPAC, raise some money and call it something other than a dog with fleas. There you go, I call it Skillz                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   


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Insiders sell the stock for many reasons, but they generally buy for just one – to make money. You’ve always heard the best information is inside information.  Everyone who has any experience at all in the stock market pays close attention to what insiders are doing.  After all, who knows a business better than the people running it?  Officers, directors, and 10% owners are required to inform the public through a Form 4 Filing any transaction, buy, sell, exercise, or any other with 48 hours of doing so. This info is available for free from the SEC’s Web site, Edgar, although we subscribe to SECForm4  as they provide a way to manage and make sense of the vast realms of data. I’ve tried a lot of vendors. SECForm4 is one of the smaller ones but I like supporting Frank. He is not arrogant. He’s helpful and has great prices. He also trades on his own data so I like people that eat what they kill.

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Another source for insider buying and selling and much more is FinViz Elite. FinViz stands for financial visualization and they do an amazing job of providing reams of data and the tools to help you get to the bottom of it, the information that helps me make informed decisions and probable outcomes. I’ve been using their site for years and it only gets better over time. This is as close to “insider information” that an ordinary investor is likely to see- and it’s entirely legal.  BEWARE– Following insiders can be hazardous to your financial health. It’s just one piece of the investor’s due diligence. The Insiders Fund blog informs you of the purchases that count.  As a rule, we only look at material amounts of money as anything less could just be window dressing. The bar is different from selling because the natural state of management is to be sellers. This is because most companies provide significant amounts of management compensation packages as stock and options. Therefore, with selling, we analyze for unusual patterns, such as insiders selling 25 percent or more of their holdings or multiple insiders selling near 52-week lows. Another red flag is large planned sale programs that start without warning. Unfortunately, the public information disclosure requirements about these programs referred to as Rule 10b5-1 is horrendously poor. Also planned sales that just pop up out of nowhere are basically sales and are seeking cover under the Sarbanes Oxley corporate welfare clause. I also generally ignore 10 percent shareholders as they tend to be OPM (other people’s money) and perhaps not the smart money we are trying to read the tea leaves on. Of course, insiders can also be wrong about their Company’s prospects. Don’t let anyone fool you into believing they never make mistakes.  Do your own analysis. They can easily be wrong about, and in many cases, maybe most cases have no more idea what the future may hold than you or me. In short, you can lose money following them.  We have and we curse aloud, what were they thinking! We like Fly on the Wall for keeping up with what events might be happening, analysts comment, and whatever else could be moving the stock.  Dow Jones news service is an essential tool but many services pick up their feed like they do Bloomberg. For quick financial analysis, it’s hard to beat Old School Value. No one tracks and understands insider behavior better than us. We’ve been doing it religiously since 2001 when I quit being an insider myself and devoted myself full time to managing my personal investments. Needless to say, past good fortune is no guarantee of future success. We may own positions, long or short, in any of these names and are under no obligation to disclose that. We welcome your comments on our analysis. This blog is solely for educational purposes and the author’s own amusement.  Investing with The Insiders Fund is for qualified investors and by Prospectus only. Nothing herein should be construed otherwise.  THE INSIDERS FUND invests in companies at or near prices that management has been willing to invest significant amounts of their own money in.  If you would like to hear more about how you can get involved with the Insiders Fund, please schedule some time on my calendar.  Prosperous Trading, Harvey Sax The Insiders Fund was the 4th best long-short equity fund in the world in 2019