The vulnerability which affects processors from Intel, AMD, and ARM could allow hackers to steal passwords and other secret data. He sold his stocks for an average price of $44.55 in December, following a 12 percent surge in Intel's stock price from September through November that saw it go from the mid-30s to the mid-40s in price.
But while the public is just being informed about the security problem, tech companies have known about it for months. Intel stock, as of today, is trading at roughly the same price as Krzanich sold stock at, so he did not yield any significant gain from selling before the vulnerability was announced.
There are a number of reasons that an executive might sell off large portions of company stock, whether it be for personal reasons like making a large purchase or because they expect the company may underperform in some aspects and would like to cash in before the stock dips.
Intel's spokesperson said that, "Brian's sale is unrelated", and that Krzanich "continues to hold shares in line with corporate guidelines".
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Google had informed Intel that vulnerability back in June, but the reports were not made public until reports were released this week, an Intel representative told Business Insider, which means that Krzanich was aware of the vulnerability issues prior to his selloff.
If you want to put things into perspective, despite the fall in Intel's share price this week; it's still trading much higher than when Krzanic sold his shares in November previous year.
On Thursday, Axios reported that Krzanich had revised his company's trading plan in October. The security researchers at Google Project Zero opened the box of Pandora when they found out about a slew of new vulnerabilities that have impacted every Intel processor shipped over a decade. The sale allowed Krzanich to whittle his holdings down to about 250,000 shares, the minimum he is required to own under Intel's rules. This is especially true since other Intel stockholders had a nightmare on Wednesday, with more than $11 billion in shareholder value wiped out.
However, according to the SEC filing, Krzanich only put that plan in place on October 30, 2017, meaning he knew about Meltdown and Spectre. The shares of Intel witnessed a slight drop ever since the news of security flaw came out in public, it is now being traded at around $44.23.