145757 bob mansfield headshot

Fortune notes that Apple senior vice president of hardware engineering Bob Mansfield sold off 99% of his Apple stock holdings on Monday, dropping his stake in the company to only 501 shares.

One of the more pro-active traders is Bob Mansfield, Apple's senior vice president in charge of Mac and iPhone hardware engineering. Not only does he exercise his options when the stock is high -- always a good idea -- but he picks up extra shares at the 15% employee discount when the stock is down.

On Monday, according to an SEC Form 4 filed yesterday, he executed his biggest trade yet, selling 38,863 shares of Apple at $351.89 each, clearing $13,675,504.96 in the deal and leaving only 501 shares in his portfolio.

Mansfield still holds vested options for another 30,000 shares and will be granted an additional 100,000 shares in 2014 should he stay with company, meaning that he still has a significant stake in the company even though he has converted almost all of his most liquid Apple assets into cash.

The report notes that Mansfield has sold off nearly $58.5 million worth of Apple stock over the past three years, strategically exercising options and selling off his holdings for solid profits and buying in on stock price dips to maximize his returns. Mansfield has been at Apple since 1999.

Top Rated Comments

Chupa Chupa Avatar
144 months ago

But this also tells us Mansfield thinks there's no safer time to sell between now and his next option. I understand $350 being "good enough", but when your hardware guy doesn't see a reason to stick around, that's bad news. I mean, he can't help but be doing a little insider trading, right?



You are grossly predicting the reason he is selling. Are you a soothsayer? There are plenty of other reasons to sell that have zero to do with Apple's business prospects or his own at Apple. It could be fear of a cap gain increase in 2012, or the need to get into cash for personal reasons, or a desire to diversify his portfolio or a million other things. This sale tells us only one thing for sure: that he sold a lot of stock.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
dacapo Avatar
144 months ago
Normally this would send a stock tanking, but if this guy has been pretty consistently doing this with his options/shares, then it's not really news, and share prices shouldn't be affected by this.

I suspect the article is just highlighting this pattern with Bob Mansfield so that no one gets the wrong idea.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
generationxwing Avatar
144 months ago
ITT: Stupid people who have never bought or sold a share in their lives, or have any idea of how the financial world works.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
nickXedge Avatar
144 months ago
I'm going to hope this is a ~$350 triggered trade. I considered doing as much (setting a hard price near pre-leave levels at which I'd sell) after the price drop when Jobs went on his current/second leave. If Jobs were to become incapacitated, I can't imagine what would happen to the stock price, deserved or not. Selling now that AAPL's nearly back to pre-Jobsian levels is just smart. Reduces exposure. Puts the bird in the hand, etc.

But this also tells us Mansfield thinks there's no safer time to sell between now and his next option. I understand $350 being "good enough", but when your hardware guy doesn't see a reason to stick around, that's bad news. I mean, he can't help but be doing a little insider trading, right?

This is likely A Bad Thing for AAPL owners, and can be no better than A Neutral Thing, and the latter only if Mansfield isn't real bright, which we know isn't the case. How close we are to the former rather than the latter would seem to be at least partially correlated with Mansfield's business acumen.

You used a lot of fun words but you still don't sound too intelligent because you're wrong. It's habit for him, he's a smart trader and profits greatly from his decisions. If you think Apple is about to tank, you have no idea what's going on with the company, and I mean publicy of course. (I'm not trying to act like I know secret plans, [satire] I'm no analyst! [/satire] )
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
gnasher729 Avatar
144 months ago
You are grossly predicting the reason he is selling. Are you a soothsayer? There are plenty of other reasons to sell that have zero to do with Apple's business prospects or his own at Apple. It could be fear of a cap gain increase in 2012, or the need to get into cash for personal reasons, or a desire to diversify his portfolio or a million other things. This sale tells us only one thing for sure: that he sold a lot of stock.

I remember years ago Bill Gates selling lots of Microsoft shares, and some people here predicting doom for Microsoft. And I'll say the same thing as I said back then, just names changed: If Bob Mansfield goes to a store selling Ferraris, and he wants a Ferrari, all the AAPL stock in the world won't get him the car he wants. He has to sell the shares, convert them into cash, hand over the cash to the car dealer, and only then will they let him have the car he wants.

What good is it to him having all the shares if he doesn't sell and spend the money?
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rdowns Avatar
144 months ago
I'm going to hope this is a ~$350 triggered trade. I considered doing as much (setting a hard price near pre-leave levels at which I'd sell) after the price drop when Jobs went on his current/second leave. If Jobs were to become incapacitated, I can't imagine what would happen to the stock price, deserved or not. Selling now that AAPL's nearly back to pre-Jobsian levels is just smart. Reduces exposure. Puts the bird in the hand, etc.

But this also tells us Mansfield thinks there's no safer time to sell between now and his next option. I understand $350 being "good enough", but when your hardware guy doesn't see a reason to stick around, that's bad news. I mean, he can't help but be doing a little insider trading, right?

This is likely A Bad Thing for AAPL owners, and can be no better than A Neutral Thing, and the latter only if Mansfield isn't real bright, which we know isn't the case. How close we are to the former rather than the latter would seem to be at least partially correlated with Mansfield's business acumen.

Did you read the article?

Over the past three years, Mansfield has sold nearly $58.5 million worth of Apple stock -- most of it acquired by exercising options and restricted stock units (RSUs). Over that period, roughly $20.6 million was set aside for taxes, leaving him with a net gain of nearly $37.9 million.

It's not like he decided to dump all his shares. You can't make money unless you sell your shares.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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