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CEO sells shares as CSL Limited climbs ASX

CSL Limited (ASX: CSL) shareholders have done well over the years as the biotech company rose up the ranks of the ASX.

And the company’s CEO, Paul Perreault, certainly didn’t miss out.

CSL released its results earlier this month, announcing a staggering 29% increase in net profit after tax, coming in at US$1.73 billion on revenues of US$7.6 billion.

A few days later the company announced that Mr Perreault had sold more than $20.4 million worth of CSL shares, unloading 94,848 shares in the blood and plasma company at $215.439 a pop.

CSL’s market value has climbed since Mr Perreault’s selloff, rising beyond $101 billion, with the company nudging out Westpac Banking Corp (ASX: WBC) to claim the third spot on the ASX by market capitalisation.

The latest increase in CSL’s value puts the company behind only Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX: CBA), with a market cap of more than $125 billion, and BHP Billiton Limited (ASX: BHP), with a value exceeding $106 billion.

A recent slide in Westpac’s share price, which was already sinking when the bank released its quarterly update last week and demonstrated disappointing margins, has seen Westpac’s market cap drop to $95.01 billion.

Mr Perrault would be even richer if he delayed his sale by a couple of weeks with shares in the company now trading at an all-time high of $224.80 at the time of writing; if he sold at today’s price he could have made an extra $888,000.

But we won’t be losing sleep over Mr Perreault’s selloff, which could be viewed as a tad hasty. CSL has been a top performer since Mr Perreault assumed the CEO position in July 2013.

Back then CSL shares were trading for about $62 and have almost quadrupled since Mr Perreault assumed the helm.

The CSL share price has gained almost 75% in the past year and is showing little sign of slowing down.

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Motley Fool contributor Steve Holland has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.