Who's Buying Now?

It's Tuesday, and that means it's time to check the most interesting insider purchases from the last week. After checking through numerous filings using insider tracking tool Form 4 Oracle, here are my top five from the last seven days:

Company

Closing price 8/29/05

52-week change

Arbor Realty Trust (NYSE: ABR  )

$28.02

+36%*

Barnes & Noble (NYSE: BKS  )

$37.43

+8%**

Big Dog Holdings (Nasdaq: BDOG  )

$6.73

+18%

Cenveo (NYSE: CVO  )

$9.45

+197%

I-many (Nasdaq: IMNY  )

$1.53

+95%

Sources: Fool.com, Yahoo! Finance
* 45% if dividend is taken into consideration.
** 57% if taking a one-time special dividend into consideration.

Arbor Realty Trust, a real estate investment trust (REIT) that specializes in short-term loans and mortgage securities, gets the top honor this week. Director Michael Kojaian bought 500,000 shares on the open market on Aug. 26. (Find details here and here using free insider tracker NetSteering.) Not bad, right? Right. But that's not what makes Arbor interesting. Nay, Arbor is interesting because I can't find a single instance of insider selling over the last year. Aren't REITs supposed to be out of favor?

Then there's Big Dog Holdings. On Aug. 25, Chairman Fred Kayne bought -- wait for it -- more than 845,000 shares. Interestingly, Kayne was the majority shareholder in Big Dog, a specialty-clothing retailer, long before last week's purchase. But the buying spree makes him the owner of more than 58% of the total shares outstanding, according to figures available at Yahoo! Finance. That's a frighteningly large stake, as it puts near-absolute control of the company in his hands.

Finally, I'll briefly touch on Barnes & Noble. It wasn't long ago that I made mention of Chairman Leonard Riggio's buying in these digital pages. Last week brought 175,000 more shares worth of purchases, raising Riggio's total stake -- including direct and indirect holdings -- to nearly 19% of the total shares outstanding. More importantly, with Barnes & Noble's recent initiation of a dividend policy, Riggio's shares could bring him more than $7 million annually in payouts. Now that's what I call income investing.

That's all for this week. See you back here next week when we dig through more insider deals in search of the next home run stock.

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Fool contributor Tim Beyers usually favors two scoops of ice cream over the inside scoop. Tim owns shares of Barnes & Noble. You can find out what else is in his portfolio by checking Tim's Fool profile, which is here. The Motley Fool has an ironclad disclosure policy.


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