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Cathay General Bancorp (CATY): Are Hedge Funds Right About This Stock?

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Cathay General Bancorp (NASDAQ:CATY) was in 7 hedge funds’ portfolio at the end of December. CATY investors should be aware of a decrease in hedge fund interest recently. There were 8 hedge funds in our database with CATY holdings at the end of the previous quarter.

Cathay General Bancorp (NASDAQ:CATY)

In today’s marketplace, there are dozens of indicators market participants can use to monitor publicly traded companies. A duo of the most innovative are hedge fund and insider trading activity. At Insider Monkey, our studies have shown that, historically, those who follow the best picks of the top investment managers can outpace the market by a very impressive amount (see just how much).

Just as beneficial, optimistic insider trading activity is another way to parse down the world of equities. Just as you’d expect, there are plenty of stimuli for an upper level exec to downsize shares of his or her company, but just one, very obvious reason why they would initiate a purchase. Several empirical studies have demonstrated the useful potential of this strategy if “monkeys” know where to look (learn more here).

Now, it’s important to take a gander at the latest action encompassing Cathay General Bancorp (NASDAQ:CATY).

How are hedge funds trading Cathay General Bancorp (NASDAQ:CATY)?

At year’s end, a total of 7 of the hedge funds we track were long in this stock, a change of -13% from the third quarter. With hedge funds’ positions undergoing their usual ebb and flow, there exists a select group of notable hedge fund managers who were boosting their stakes substantially.

According to our comprehensive database, Citadel Investment Group, managed by Ken Griffin, holds the biggest position in Cathay General Bancorp (NASDAQ:CATY). Citadel Investment Group has a $13.5 million position in the stock, comprising less than 0.1%% of its 13F portfolio. Coming in second is Hutchin Hill Capital, managed by Neil Chriss, which held a $2.9 million position; the fund has 0.3% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Remaining hedgies with similar optimism include Cliff Asness’s AQR Capital Management, D. E. Shaw’s D E Shaw and David Costen Haley’s HBK Investments.

Because Cathay General Bancorp (NASDAQ:CATY) has faced falling interest from the smart money, it’s easy to see that there were a few hedge funds that decided to sell off their entire stakes in Q4. At the top of the heap, Richard Schimel’s Diamondback Capital cut the largest investment of the 450+ funds we track, totaling about $1 million in stock., and Dmitry Balyasny of Balyasny Asset Management was right behind this move, as the fund dumped about $0.9 million worth. These bearish behaviors are interesting, as aggregate hedge fund interest was cut by 1 funds in Q4.

Insider trading activity in Cathay General Bancorp (NASDAQ:CATY)

Insider trading activity, especially when it’s bullish, is at its handiest when the primary stock in question has seen transactions within the past 180 days. Over the last six-month time period, Cathay General Bancorp (NASDAQ:CATY) has experienced 1 unique insiders purchasing, and 6 insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

Let’s also review hedge fund and insider activity in other stocks similar to Cathay General Bancorp (NASDAQ:CATY). These stocks are CVB Financial Corp. (NASDAQ:CVBF), Western Alliance Bancorporation (NYSE:WAL), WestAmerica Bancorp. (NASDAQ:WABC), Glacier Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:GBCI), and Umpqua Holdings Corp (NASDAQ:UMPQ). All of these stocks are in the regional – pacific banks industry and their market caps resemble CATY’s market cap.

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