Director dealings can provide a useful pointer for investors as management have a deep pool of knowledge about their firm and insider buying and selling can sometimes be an indication of the health of the business.

Saying that, investors shouldn't jump to conclusions when directors sell shares as this can sometimes be prompted by tax liabilities or it may be the first opportunity for management to sell stock which was issued to them many years ago.

Over the last week, there have been a few interesting deals including £1.4m worth of shares being offloaded by HSBC (HSBA) executive director Marc Moses partly to cover tax liabilities.

Chief executive officer John Flint gave the same reason for selling nearly £500,000 of HSBC stock under the company's share-plan scheme.

At the end of January, we revealed our top three reasons why we would not invest in the global bank, which you can read here.

SIGNIFICANT BUYING ACTIVITY AT HIKMA AND VICTORIA

Other notable deals include the purchase of nearly £650,000 worth of shares in pharmaceutical company Hikma (HIK) by executive director Mazen Darwazah and chairman Said Darwazah.

This may be seen as a vote of confidence by management after Hikma missed analysts' expectations for its biggest division, injectables, in its latest annual results.

At floor coverings manufacturer Victoria (VCP:AIM), non-executive director Alexander Anton has been busy buying 350,000 shares in the company, worth around £1m.

Over the last year, trading woes at Victoria have knocked the share price down by 17% to 580p. In November, Victoria disappointed the market with a downbeat trading update after price cuts weighed on operating margins.

In last month's trading update the floor-coverings specialist predicted that underlying pre-tax profit this year would be between 35% and 39% higher than 2018’s £40.8m but that also fell short of analysts’ forecasts.

You can keep up with all of the latest directors' dealings here.


Issue Date: 18 Mar 2019