2iQ Insider Brief: LKOH:MCX, MYA:CVA, IO:NYSE

Patrick Hable 16 May 2018

PJSC Lukoil (LKOH: MCX)

12-month performance: +34%
Insider activity: Bullish
Buying pattern: Multiple directors including CEO, near 52-week high
Recent news: Good results for FY2017

PJSC Lukoil is a Russian multinational energy corporation that specialises in the extraction, production, transport and sale of petroleum, natural gas and petroleum products. Over the past year, shares in Lukoil have enjoyed a strong rally, rising from RUB 2,900 to RUB 3,900, a gain of 34%. Yet, recent buying from key directors indicates that there could potentially be more gains to come.

LKOH-RX

Over the last week, Lukoil shares have seen significant levels of insider buying, including eight separate purchases from the CEO. This is a bullish indicator and suggests that Lukoil’s uptrend may have further to run, despite the fact the stock is trading near its 52-week high. 

Maya Gold and Silver Inc (MYA: CVA)

12-month performance: +418%
Insider activity: Bullish
Buying pattern: Multiple directors, near 52-week high
Recent news: Completed an oversubscribed private placement

Headquartered in Montreal, Canada, Maya Gold and Silver Inc is a mining and mineral exploration company with a focus on gold and silver assets in Morocco. Maya shares have performed spectacularly well over the past 12 months, surging from CAD $0.56 to CAD $2.90, a gain of an impressive 418%.

AYA-CN

Sentiment towards the CAD $231m market cap gold explorer is high right now, with the company recently completing an oversubscribed, non-brokered private placement that raised CAD $28.4m at a 32% premium to the stock’s closing price on April 10, 2018. 

In the last week, five different directors have purchased Maya Gold and Silver Inc stock near 52-week high prices. This is a bullish signal and indicates that there could be further good news on the horizon. Maya Gold and Silver Inc is a stock to watch closely.

ION Geophysical Corp (IO: NYSE)

12-month performance: +540%
Insider activity: Bullish
Buying pattern: Multiple directors including CEO and CFO
Recent news: Raised equity, retired debt ahead of schedule

ION Geophysical Corp is a global technology-focused company that provides geoscience technology, services and solutions to the oil and gas industry. The stock has been a poor performer in recent years, falling from close to USD $100 in August 2013 to just over USD $3 in July last year. However, it appears that the company could be turning things around. Over the last 12 months, the shares have bounced 540% back to USD $27. Can the turnaround story continue? 

IO-US

Recent news has been positive. The company announced in February that it had raised USD $48m in a public equity offering, and then in March announced that it had retired debt ahead of schedule to de-lever its business. 

Director buying here suggests that the turnaround story could have further to run. Over the past three months, nine different directors have purchased stock in ION Geophysical, including the CEO and the CFO. Given that directors have the best understanding of a company’s prospects, this level of insider buying is a bullish signal. Key insiders are clearly confident in the outlook for ION Geophysical Corp stock.

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