I work for a publicly traded company, and part of my compensation includes stock. We've gotten a bunch of (recurring) training of what not to do with this stock to avoid insider trading -- for example, if we have advanced knowledge of something bad we shouldn't sell our shares before that news becomes public knowledge, etc.
My understanding is that, basically, my position at my company gives me early information about the company that I shouldn't leverage. But my position gives me early information about the entire industry -- so I'm curious if it means that pretty much any stocks I purchase from my company's competitors in the same industry would therefore be also tainted.
An example. Say I work for Foo Widget Corp. It's the end of the quarter, and I know that my company is going to miss our projections/guidance/etc by a lot: the widget market has unexpectedly cooled. Because I have knowledge based on privileged information (sales numbers and specifics), I know that I shouldn't sell my Foo Corp stock because this is insider trading.
But I also hold stock in Bar Inc, who also manufactures widgets and is Foo Corp's competitor. Since I know that the widget market is in trouble as a whole, can I sell my Bar Inc stock, or is that also insider trading since it's based on my Foo Corp experience and information?