A trading plan set up by Tractor Supply CFO Tony Crudele on Tuesday exercised 14,000 options granted him in early 2011 and sold the resulting shares. Crudele's profit on the transactions tops $769,000. Tractor Supply shares (Ticker: TSCO) are up some 55 percent so far in 2013 and are up nearly tenfold since the big market bottom of March 2009.
Two senior executives at Cracker Barrel Old Country Store — one of them preparing to retire — last week sold more than $3.4 million worth of their shares in the restaurant and retail company, which are trading just off their all-time highs (Ticker: CBRL) and are up more than 60 percent year to date.
Executive Vice President and Chief People Officer Doug Barber — who in August said he plans to leave the company in January — was the bigger seller of the two, unloading his entire stake of almost 21,000 shares on Friday. The sale grossed him almost $2.2 million. Also selling a lot of stock was Edward Greene, Cracker Barrel's senior VP of strategic initiatives. Greene, who joined the company eight years ago from purchasing co-op Restaurant Services Inc., sold about 60 percent of his holdings for a total take of almost $1.3 million.
The sales by Barber and Greene comes as Cracker Barrel's board is in the midst of a third straight contested proxy fight with Sardar Biglari, the chairman of the holding company that controls Steak 'n Shake and owner of 20 percent of Cracker Barrel. Biglari recently called on the board to pay a massive special dividend, a demand the company will let shareholders vote on in an advisory capacity.
The fact that Dollar General shares are changing hands at record highs hasn't escaped Chief Merchandising Officer Todd Vasos. On Tuesday of this week, the 51-year-old Vasos sold more than 23,000 of the 36,000 shares he owned in the company for more than $1.3 million. Vasos joined Goodlettsville-based Dollar General (Ticker: DG) in late 2008 from Longs Drug Stores.
A quartet of Brookdale Senior Living insiders — including the company's former CEO — have in the past week sold chunks of their stock holdings, generating almost $8 million. The biggest sale came from Bill Sheriff, who led the Brentwood-based company until this past February and still sits on its board of directors. He hit the sell button on 200,000 shares worth more than $5.3 million and gifted another $1.1 million worth. (He still owns more than 640,000 shares of Brookdale (Ticker: BKD), which have given up 11 percent in the past month but are still up slightly year to date.
Also lightening their company stakes since last Friday were director James Seward and Chief Administrative Officer Bryan Richardson, who both sold 40,000 shares for about $1.1 million, and COO Gregory Richard, who sold more than 14,000 shares for about $400,000.
SEE ALSO: Other noteworthy insider transactions from this summer
Local entrepreneur Mike Shmerling has been active in the market in the past week in his role as a board member of HealthStream. First, he exercised 15,000 options that would have expired in 2018 last Friday. Then he turned around and unloaded more than 37,000 shares — some 30 percent of his total HealthStream holdings — on Tuesday and Wednesday. His profits on the transactions topped $1.1 million.
Do you see value in shares of Ryman Hospitality Properties (Ticker: RHP), which are down 10 percent year to date? The trustee of the rabbi trust handling some of Chairman and CEO Colin Reed's supplemental retirement payments does and last week spent $300,000 on the hotel real estate investment trust's shares.
Headed in the other direction is HealthStream co-founder and director Jeff McLaren, who on Monday cashed in a bunch of stock options with an exercise price of less than $5 and sold them for more than $33. His profit on the transactions ran to more than $430,000. HealthStream shares (Ticker: HSTM) are up more than 35 percent so far in 2013.
Community Health Systems senior executive Tom Miller booked one of the bigger stock option paydays we've seen this year last Friday when he exercised 80,000 stock options and then sold the resulting shares as well as some 30,000 others. His net on the transactions came to $2.5 million. Miller, who has been with CHS since 2007, is one of the company's five division presidents operating just below Chairman, President and CEO Wayne Smith and CFO Larry Cash.
A stock trading plan set up for Corrections Corp. of America CFO Todd Mullenger has this week monetized 75,000 stock options, nicely divided into chunks of 25,000 on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Combined, the transactions — view them here and here — produced a profit of more than $1.5 million. Mullenger less than a month ago booked a $1.1 million gain on a similar set of transactions.
Claire Gulmi, Mullenger's peer at AmSurg, cashed in some of her chips Tuesday and Wednesday, exercising 70,000 stock options granted her in 2006. Her gain on the sale of the resulting shares came to almost $1.3 million. AmSurg shares (Ticker: AMSG) have climbed more than 30 percent so far this year and are near their all-time highs.
Also near record highs are shares of HealthStream (Ticker: HSTM), a fact that has not escaped Linda Rebrovick, who has been on the company's board since 2001. Rebrovick this week sold 21,000 shares — almost two-thirds of her holdings — for total proceeds of $670,000.
AmSurg President and CEO Chris Holden on Friday and Monday exercised more than 48,000 stock options granted him in 2011 and last year. He then sold the resulting shares, booking a total profit of more than $750,000 on the transactions. Similarly, Chief Accounting Officer Kevin Eastridge earned almost $380,000 on his exercise of 20,000 options and sale of the resulting shares. AmSurg shares (Ticker: AMSG) are up about 30 percent year to date.
A trading plan set up by Todd Mullenger, the CFO of Corrections Corp. of America, last week exercised 50,000 options granted him from 2008 to 2010 and sold the resulting shares. (Click here and here for the details.) Mullenger's profit on the transactions, which came after CCA shares (Ticker: CXW) gave up almost 20 percent in six weeks, came to more than $1.1 million.
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