I haven’t seen the full details yet of who bought what when.

But the Times points to a significant purchase by HBOS (HBOS, 474p) directors and staff, who ‘spent almost £6 million bumping up their shareholdings in the FTSE 100 mortgage bank the day after malicious rumours’.

Let’s take a look back to November last year, when the banks were in freefall over market rumours as to who held the toxic waste. RBS directors, by buying in significant size, and in concert, sent a very strong message to the market.

Over the next three weeks, RBS was up 21% absolute, or 18% relative to the FTSE. Can this happen again? Absolutely. But I don’t think it will take three weeks this time

See my note of December 6th: RBS directors outperform FTSE by 18%.

Postscript with my change of view following further information, see post of March 26th on HBOS ‘Read the fine print’.