Sunday, December 7, 2008

The day Gary Pruitt, Howard Weaver and Anthony Ridder bailed on McClatchy

February 9, 2007 was quite a day for Gary Pruitt, Howard Weaver and Anthony Ridder -- that was the day these McClatchy insiders quietly sold thousands of shares of McClatchy stock and walked off with a tidy sum.

Here is the 2/9/07 breakdown, via StockGuru:

Gary Pruitt (CEO) sold 40,040 shares
Howard Weaver (VP, News) sold 4000 shares
Anthony Ridder (Director) sold 31,300 shares
Anthony Ridder (Director) sold 6,400 shares

The price per share that day? Over $38.00 a share. McClatchy shares are now trading around $2 a share. The fact that they sold off on the same day can't be a coincidence. Were these insiders acting on some inside info that other investors didn't have access to? Makes you wonder. And what does it say about their commitment to McClatchy and their fellow employees? I'd love to hear Gary Pruitt and Howard Weaver explain themselves. I bet thousands of McClatchy employees would be interested to hear, too.
List of current major MNI stockholders here.
Hat tip: Archer05


Anonymous said...

Gary Pruitt ought to be fired for that. Nothing like confidence in your own handi work.

Anonymous said...

You know if you go to the SEC edgar archives you will find that the sells you list are just the tip of the iceburg. These people also acquired massive numbers of shares at between 26 and 28 dollars, selling them the same day for 38+. From what I can see, it doesn't appear that the shares reported on the 17th were included in the sells that you refer to. It also remains unclear as to why they were reported separately from your Stock Guru shares which were reported on the 12th, but I'd assume that it was some sort of special options grant at the time the deal closed.

In any event, the total shares they unloaded is far greater than what is listed here.

Archer05 said...

Howard Weaver still contents Pruitt is the right man to lead McClatchy out of the wilderness. Or, the deep Red Sea, as he eludes to Pruitt’s “hand on the tiller.”

Another poster wrote of Pruitt, “The bland leading the bland in the last days of Print Media.” Or, I like, “Pruitt, bluitt.”

Archer05 said...

To Anonymous 1:05 PM.-
I don’t know how to track stock sales at all, and I wish I could follow up on your information. I did see George Soros and other large hedge fund operators as players in the MNI stock report.

My red flag was seeing McClatchy people dumping their stocks the same day, and month. It seems to me they must have talked together about a drop in their portfolio's worth. That doesn’t sounds like good stewards to me.

The Los Angeles Times reporters have filed a class-action lawsuit against Sam Zell. I hope McClatchy employees are noting the things that might work in their favor should the need arise. Plainly, the top management looked after themselves well in advance, and their actions may have hurt everyone, in the end.