This article was first published at The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Friday, August 23rd, 2013:
On Wednesday, Insider Monkey, the service from Stocknomics that tracks insider trades and hedge fund activity, said that “the constant drama over GMOs (genetically modified organisms) seems to be hitting the newswires daily … [and] some hedge funds want nothing to do with Monsanto…. Monsanto Company (NYSE: MON) has experienced declining interest from the entirety of the hedge funds we track.” It added: “Over the last half-year time frame, Monsanto has seen zero unique insiders purchasing and 10 insider sales.”
Specifically, Monsanto’s CEO, Hugh Grant, just sold 40,000 shares at $97.74 (just under $4 million), while two other high-level Monsanto insiders bailed out of 10,000 shares each.
As Mike Adams, the self-described “Food Ranger” and scribe at his popular website, Natural News, put it:
This means people increasingly don’t like Monsanto, and that’s a direct result of all the growing realizations about the dangers of GMOs, Monsanto’s predatory business practices, the company’s dangerous experiments that have already unleashed genetic pollution, and the fact that GM corn has been experimentally found to cause widespread cancer tumors in rat studies.
Adams has been following Monsanto for years and thinks that eventually MON will drop to zero and their executives will go to jail:
I … believe there will come a day when many of the top Monsanto executives will be arrested and prosecuted for their role in carrying out crimes against humanity (not just from GMOs but also from glyphosate [a key ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup product].
When that day comes, Monsanto share prices will … fall through the floor … leaving investors holding worthless paper … a kind of poetic justice for all those who furthered the means of such a destructive entity in the first place.
The company just can’t catch a break. When Proposition 37 failed to pass in California last November – a bill which would have required genetically modified goods to be labeled as such – it so outraged Tami Canal, a mother of two, that she started a Facebook page. Her blog caught fire – went viral – and on May 25th some two million people worldwide protested in the March Against Monsanto. What upset Canal the most was the role Monsanto had in defeating the measure: it spent more than $8 million in opposition.
That march gained traction when the so-called “Monsanto Protection Act” was signed into law in March, protecting genetically modified seed makers from litigation over any health risks such foods might generate.
In June the company reported that its quarterly earnings had slipped and that future earnings would be weak as well.
A fast look at Monsanto reveals a company with 42 pages on Wikipedia, with more than a dozen of them devoted to litigations and controversies ranging all the way from its development of DDT to Agent Orange, as well as bullying tactics involving farmers who have somehow breached Monsanto’s rules, often without knowing it.
Adams asked his readers to rate the “most evil company in the world” back in January 2011. 16,000 readers responded to his survey and Monsanto received 51 percent of the vote. In contrast the Federal Reserve got 20 percent and British Petroleum got just 9 percent.
In 2012 Marie-Monique Robin published The World According to Monsanto in which she joins Adams in documenting that Monsanto wants control of the world seed market along with the genetic engineering of those seeds that are resistant to, and therefore dependent on, Monsanto’s Roundup. In her book she calls Roundup and GMOs the “most dangerous products of modern times.”
As Megan Myers wrote at Yahoo.com, “Would you trust the company that gave us Agent Orange yesterday to give us the food on our plates tomorrow?”
With insiders bailing out along with hedge funds, Monsanto’s stock has dropped from $109 in May to $96 as of yesterday. With all this baggage, it appears than MON doesn’t look like a long-term hold.
MarketWatch: stock price chart on MON
MarketWatch: Monsanto’s quarterly earnings slip 3%
Stocknomics: Hedge Funds Are Dumping Monsanto Company (MON)