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Financial

Juniper's CEO Sells 500K Shares

With only a month left until Christmas, Juniper Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: JNPR) CEO Scott Kriens sold about $4.3 million worth of his Juniper stock, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Perhaps Kriens is freeing up some holiday cash. But insider sales are always worth a little scrutiny (Cue dramatic music).

The SEC filings show that Kriens sold 500,000 shares last Friday at about $8.66 a share. Even after the sale, he still held 16.4 million shares through third parties, giving him about a 4.3 percent stake in Juniper.

As testimony to the power of the current Wall Street rally, investors took little notice of the stock sale. Shares of Juniper were up $0.84 (9.6%) to $9.57 in late afternoon trading Monday, making Kriens' remaining stake in the router vendor worth about $157 million. (Ho! Ho! Ho!)

The good news is that no red flags appear to accompany this sale. Juniper's stock price is well above its 52-week low of $4.15.

Across the market overall, insider selling has dropped in the past six months, according to Lon Gerber, director of insider research at Thomson Financial. That generally signals that the market has found a plateau, if not a bottom, Gerber says.

Does it mean that a rally or recovery is afoot? Nah, says Gerber. That would require some buying, not just a lack of selling.

"In Juniper's case there really hasn't been much insider selling at all," Gerber says. The only other transaction this year came in August, and that was also by Kriens in the amount of 500,000 shares.

"Executives have limited windows when they are allowed to trade Juniper stock," writes a Juniper spokeswoman, in an email to Light Reading. "Scott has always followed a consistent trading pattern -- when he has been allowed to trade -- and will continue to do so."

— Phil Harvey, Senior Editor, Light Reading
www.lightreading.com
Belzebutt 12/4/2012 | 9:17:41 PM
re: Juniper's CEO Sells 500K Shares Is there really a story here?
BBBoa 12/4/2012 | 9:17:40 PM
re: Juniper's CEO Sells 500K Shares Apparently, it's a slow news day for Lightreading.

Scott's probably just taking advice from his accountant and making some alignments to get his tax situation straight for the tax year.
Tony Li 12/4/2012 | 9:17:39 PM
re: Juniper's CEO Sells 500K Shares Some other excellent advice might be to diversify, and that some dollar-cost averaging on the way out might not be a bad way to go.

Tony
mellonHead 12/4/2012 | 9:17:31 PM
re: Juniper's CEO Sells 500K Shares Reality is nobody, especially CEO's, sell if they
think the price will go higher in the near term.

Barron's magazine reports that the most recent
numbers on short interest on the big board (NYSE)
total 8B shares. A huge number. Their theory is
the recent runup in stocks has been largely
driven by short interest.

Perhaps Mr. Krien's has put his economics degree
to work and come to the same conclusion.

mH
puddnhead_wilson 12/4/2012 | 9:17:26 PM
re: Juniper's CEO Sells 500K Shares >Barron's magazine reports that the most recent
numbers on short interest on the big board (NYSE)
total 8B shares. A huge number. Their theory is
the recent runup in stocks has been largely
driven by short interest.

Forgive me, but I am more than a little puzzled how an increase in short selling -- or ANY kind of selling, for that matter -- can be postulated to drive a stock price UP.
Vesting 12/4/2012 | 9:17:23 PM
re: Juniper's CEO Sells 500K Shares Oh no, Oh my, The CEO of Juniper is a capitalist. He is actally doing all that work for the money. He is expecting to be able to diversify and maybe even spend some of it.

Thank you Light Reading for bringing this news to the masses. What is this world coming to?
mellonHead 12/4/2012 | 9:17:19 PM
re: Juniper's CEO Sells 500K Shares They said 'driven by short interest'.

When a large short imbalance occurs traders may
feel compelled to cover their short positions
creating the anomoly...
kbkirchn 12/4/2012 | 9:17:19 PM
re: Juniper's CEO Sells 500K Shares re: Short Selling

Short Sellers "sell" shares they don't currently have, in anticipation that the price will decline. At some future point, the short seller must actually purchase the shares so they can deliver those shares to the purchaser.

That purchase is usually timed to occur when the short seller believes the shares at a low price or when the contract is almost up, whichever comes first.

A market increase due to "short covering" is short-lived, as it not due to actual demand for the stock.
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