Over the past year, many Republic Services, Inc. (NYSE:RSG) insiders sold a large stake in the company, which may have piqued investor interest. When evaluating insider trades, it is generally more beneficial to know whether insiders are buying or selling, as the latter can be subject to many interpretations. However, when multiple insiders are selling shares over a specific length of time, shareholders should take heed, as this could possibly be a red flag.

While we don’t believe shareholders should simply follow insider trading, we would consider it foolish to ignore insider trading altogether.

Republic Services insider trades over the past year

The consultant, Donald Slager, has made the biggest insider sale in the last 12 months. This single transaction was for $4.1 million worth of shares at a price of $94.85 each. This means that even when the stock price was below the current price of US$135, an insider wanted to cash in some shares. When an insider sells below the current price, it suggests that they consider this lower price to be fair. This makes us wonder what they think of the recent (higher) valuation. Please note, however, that sellers may have various reasons for selling, so we don’t know for sure what they think of the stock price. We note that the largest sale involved only 13% of Donald Slager’s stake.

In total, insiders sold more shares of Republic Services than they bought in the past year. You can see a visual representation of insider trading (by companies and individuals) over the past 12 months, below. By clicking on the graph below, you will be able to see the precise detail of each insider trade!

NYSE: RSG Insider Trading Volume December 6, 2021

If you like buying stocks that insiders are buying, rather than selling, then you might love this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders bought them).

Republic Services insiders recently sold shares

The last three months have seen significant insider selling at Republic Services. Specifically, independent director Tomago Collins gave up US$267,000 worth of shares at that time, and we didn’t record any buys. In light of this, it’s hard to say that all insiders think stocks are a good deal.

Does Republic Services Claim High Insider Ownership?

I like to look at how many shares insiders own in a company, to help me get a sense of how aligned they are with insiders. High insider participation often makes company management more concerned with the interests of shareholders. It appears Republic Services insiders own 0.2% of the company, worth around $74 million. While this is a high but not exceptional level of insider ownership, it suffices to indicate some alignment between management and small shareholders.

So what does this data suggest about Republic Services insiders?

An insider hasn’t bought shares of Republic Services in the past three months, but there have been some sales. Zooming out, the longer term image doesn’t give us much comfort. On the positive side, Republic Services is making money and increasing profits. Although the insiders own shares, they don’t own a whole lot and they sold. We are in no rush to buy! So these insider trades can help us build a thesis on the stock, but it’s also helpful to know the risks this company faces. At Simply Wall St, we found 2 warning signs for the services of the Republic that deserve your attention before buying shares.

If you’d rather check out another company – one with potentially superior finances – then don’t miss this free list of attractive companies, which have a high return on equity and low debt.

For the purposes of this article, insiders are persons who report their transactions to the relevant regulatory body. We currently record open market transactions and private dispositions, but not derivative transactions.

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This Simply Wall St article is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It is not a recommendation to buy or sell stocks and does not take into account your objectives or financial situation. Our goal is to bring you targeted long-term analysis based on fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not take into account the latest announcements from price-sensitive companies or qualitative materials. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned.

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