Bill Gates dumped nearly $1bn in Microsoft stock this year

RTXUFF5REUTERS/Kevin LamarqueBill Gates speaks at the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) 2010 mHealth Summit in Washington November 9, 2010.

Bill Gates topped a list of the biggest insider sellers, which was dominated by the big names in tech.

Gates sold more than $US717 million ($983 million) of Microsoft stock this year, according to Sqoop.com, and he wasn’t the only one to turn his equity into cash.

Google co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page dumped more than $US1 billion of their company stock between them, while former Twitter CEO Evan Williams sold $US275 million of shares in the company he helped set up.

Here’s the list of the top 10 insider sellers as ranked by Sqoop:

Company Seller Amount
Microsoft Bill Gates $US717,407,400
Google Sergey Brin $US542,622,259
Google Larry Page $US538,428,550
Carnival Corp Micky Arison $US433,700,000
Family Dollar Stores Howard Levine $US278,809,852
Twitter Evan Williams $US275,037,833
Best Buy Richard Schulze $US253,690,144
CBS Leslie Moonves $US210,033,068
Diamond Resorts Stephen Cloobeck $US176,469,679
Quintiles Transnational Dennis Gillings $US162,327,527

Tech insiders hold four spots on the top 10 list.

Most of the big sellers Sqoop found were former executives who now work at investment companies managing other people’s money, which were removed from the final list.

“Once you weed out the Wall Street insiders on the list like Goldman, Thomas H. Lee, Madison Deerborne, and Welsh Carson, the list narrows quickly to fewer than 20 individuals out of the top 200 we examined,” Sqoop’s Bill Hanke’s said.

Company insiders can sell off stock as long as they inform the market and only use information available to other investors to make their decision.

17 companies sold off more than a $US1 billion in stocks through May of this year and the 40 largest sellers Sqoop compiled made a little over $US50.7 billion in total.

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