The stock of Blackstone fell 3.5 % in premarket trading on Wednesday after the company announced the sale of shares by Hamilton E. James, it's executive vice-chairman.

For about $500 million, James sold 3.71 million shares of the private equity behemoth. The transaction represents around 0.3 % of the company's stock.

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James has ascribed the trades to family trusts that sold them for his heirs for estate planning and needed diversification, according to the company's SEC filing.

According to the statement, he is selling only enough Blackstone shares held outside those trusts to partially finance the taxes owed on the exchange, while keeping 80 % of his personal ownership in the company.

According to the statement, James intends to remain a long-term Blackstone stakeholder.

James joins a long line of CEOs and Fortune 500 executives, including Microsoft's Satya Nadella, Apple's Tim Cook, and Tesla's Elon Musk, who have taken advantage of the stock market's recent record highs to liquidate a portion of their holdings for various reasons.