In this series, we look through the most recent Dividend Channel ''DividendRank'' report, and then we cherry pick only those companies that have experienced insider buying within the past six months. The officers and directors of a company tend to have a unique insider's view of the business, and presumably the only reason an insider would choose to take their hard-earned cash and use it to buy stock in the open market, is that they expect to make money — maybe they find the stock very undervalued, or maybe they see exciting progress within the company, or maybe both. So when stocks turn up that see insider buying, and are also top ranked, investors are wise to take notice. One such company is Excel Trust Inc. (EXL), which saw buying by Director Robert E. Parsons Jr..Back on June 25, Parsons Jr. invested $50,122.00 into 3,800 shares of EXL, for a cost per share of $13.19. In trading on Friday, bargain hunters could buy shares of Excel Trust Inc. ( EXL) and achieve a cost basis 3.6% cheaper than Parsons Jr., with shares changing hands as low as $12.72 per share. It should be noted that Parsons Jr. has collected $0.17/share in dividends since the time of their purchase, so they are currently down 2.3% on their purchase from a total return basis. Excel Trust Inc. shares are currently trading +0.47% on the day. The chart below shows the one year performance of EXL shares, versus its 200 day moving average: Looking at the chart above, EXL's low point in its 52 week range is $10.96 per share, with $13.94 as the 52 week high point — that compares with a last trade of $12.85. By comparison, below is a table showing the prices at which insider buying was recorded over the last six months:
|02/28/2014||Robert E. Parsons Jr.||Director||5,000||$12.55||$62,740.00|
|03/19/2014||Gary B. Sabin||Chairman of the Board / CEO||3,000||$12.51||$37,524.90|
|03/20/2014||Gary B. Sabin||Chairman of the Board / CEO||2,000||$12.49||$24,980.00|
|06/25/2014||Robert E. Parsons Jr.||Director||3,800||$13.19||$50,122.00|
The report stated, '' Dividend investors approaching investing from a value standpoint are generally most interested in researching the strongest most profitable companies, that also happen to be trading at an attractive valuation. That's what we aim to find using our proprietary DividendRank formula, which ranks the coverage universe based upon our various criteria for both profitability and valuation, to generate a list of the top most 'interesting' stocks, meant for investors as a source of ideas that merit further research.''The annualized dividend paid by Excel Trust Inc. is $0.70/share, currently paid in quarterly installments, and its most recent dividend ex-date was on 09/26/2014. Below is a long-term dividend history chart for EXL, which the report stressed as being of key importance. Indeed, studying a company's past dividend history can be of good help in judging whether the most recent dividend is likely to continue.