10 Most Popular Stocks Among Hedge Funds – Q2 2012

The 13Fs for the second quarter are in and Insider Monkey has processed the filings from a number of hedge funds as well as other well-known investors. At the end of the first quarter, according to Q1′s list of the most popular stocks among hedge funds, the top three stocks were Apple, Google, and Microsoft. How have these companies done since we published that piece on May 22nd, giving investors a chance to copy hedge funds’ top picks? Apple is up 19%, Google went up 11%, and Microsoft rose 3%. This averages out to an 11% gain compared to the S&P 500’s 8% rise. This quarter’s top ten list is very similar to last quarter’s; in fact, the set of stocks is exactly the same, though several of them have shifted places on the list as many top stocks saw declines in hedge fund ownership. Here are the ten most popular stocks among hedge funds as of the end of the second quarter:

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1. Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL): Apple was the top stock among hedge funds last quarter and they just kept piling in. 140 funds reported Apple stakes, up from 134 at the end of March. Bain Capital’s Brookside Capital was one of the funds jumping on the bandwagon, initiating a position of about 520,000 shares. According to the 13F, that was over $300 million.

2. Google (NASDAQ:GOOG): 114 hedge funds reported a position in Google, essentially unchanged from 115 in the first quarter. Billionaire Stephen Mandel’s position at Lone Pine Capital increased slightly and is now worth over $750 million.

3. Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT): Hedge funds left Microsoft in the second quarter- the tech giant had 98 hedge fund owners as opposed to 103 at the beginning of April- but it held on to the #3 slot. Renaissance Technologies bucked the crowd, nearly doubling its position to 15.8 million shares.

4. Citigroup (NYSE:C): Citigroup was another company that hedge funds generally left, with 83 hedge funds having a position (down from 97). David Tepper, however, increased his position to 9.3 million shares.

5. Bank of America (NYSE:BAC): 80 hedge funds reported a position in Bank of America, down from 87 at the end of the first quarter. Bruce Berkowitz was once again the top shareholder of those tracked in our 13F database, at over 100 million shares. This one position was worth over $800 million at the end of June.

6. JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM): The London Whale fiasco didn’t affect the hedge fund community much: 78 funds at the end of March, 78 at the end of June. Billionaire Julian Robertson initiated a position in JPMorgan in the second quarter.

7. Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM): 76 funds disclosed long positions in Qualcomm, compared to 78 last quarter. Fisher Asset Management, run by billionaire Ken Fisher, increased its stake by over 60% to 9.3 million shares.

8. Pfizer (NYSE:PFE): Pfizer creeped up the list a bit as 75 funds reported positions in the healthcare company, up from 74. Discovery Capital Management, run by Tiger Cub Rob Citrone, added to its Pfizer position in the second quarter.

9. General Motors (NYSE:GM):82 hedge funds had owned shares of GM at the end of March, but that number fell to 75 by the end of June as the auto market remained weak. However, David Einhorn added to Greenlight Capital’s position and the fund is the largest hedge fund shareholder according to our 13F database.

10. Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC): Warren Buffett’s favorite bank also saw a number of hedge funds leave. 72 hedge funds owned shares of Wells Fargo, down from 81 (see Warren Buffett’s new stock picks).

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