Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is the most popular stock among hedge funds, but here's one manager who's taken an especially strong liking to the stock.
Manish Chopra founded Tiger Veda Management in 2006 after leaving Tiger Management and Julian Robertson, one of the hedge fund industry's most revered mentors. As you can probably guess, Chopra's history makes him a member of the vaunted "Tiger Cub" community, which consists of a number of high-performing money managers like John Griffin, Stephen Mandel and Lee Ainslie.
On the whole, Chopra and Tiger Veda oversee a smaller portfolio than the majority of their peers, with $300-$400 million in assets under management, and a 13F portfolio worth a little over $240 million. Like the 'Buffett's and 'Einhorn's of the hedge fund world (see Warren Buffett's portfolio here), Tiger Veda's capital base is concentrated in a small number of companies - 15 to be exact.
With Tiger Veda's top five stock picks accounting for a little over half of its 13F portfolio, this strategy has proven to be quite successful of late, as the fund returned 14.8% last quarter. Let's take a look at Tiger Veda's top five, to determine if they're stocks individual investors should consider buying. After all, our empirical research shows that it's possible to outperform the market by 7% a year mimicking hedge funds' top picks, and Manish Chopra's stock portfolio did perform better than 370 of the 400 funds we track last quarter.
According to its 13F filing with the SEC, Tiger Veda's top stock pick is Loral Space & Communications Ltd. (NASDAQ:LORL), which accounts for 15% of the fund's 13F portfolio. Since the end of this year's first quarter, Chopra has boosted his stake in the satellite communications company by over 130%. Between April 1st and December 1st, shares of Loral Space had risen by over 6% to hit an all-time high of $85.84, but a $29.00 (37% yield) special dividend on December 5th pushed the stock down to the mid-$50 range.
Going forward, a recent sale of its satellite manufacturing segment leaves Loral Space to focus on satellite services, but investors can still get a decent value play post-dividend at 10 times earnings, and the sell-side expects higher adjusted EPS growth (18%) next year than this year (16.3%). Another prominent hedge fund manager invested in Loral and the end of Q3 was Leon Cooperman, who owns nearly 20% more of the stock than Chopra. (Here’s a full look at Leon Cooperman's newest stock picks.)