Do Hedge Funds and Insiders Love Simon Property Group, Inc (NYSE:SPG)?

Simon Property Group, Inc (NYSE:SPG) was in 22 hedge funds’ portfolio at the end of the fourth quarter of 2012. SPG investors should pay attention to a decrease in enthusiasm from smart money lately. There were 28 hedge funds in our database with SPG positions at the end of the previous quarter.

In today’s marketplace, there are a multitude of metrics investors can use to monitor Mr. Market. Some of the most underrated are hedge fund and insider trading activity. At Insider Monkey, our studies have shown that, historically, those who follow the best picks of the elite hedge fund managers can outperform the broader indices by a healthy amount (see just how much).

Just as key, positive insider trading sentiment is another way to parse down the marketplace. Just as you’d expect, there are many reasons for an insider to sell shares of his or her company, but only one, very simple reason why they would initiate a purchase. Many empirical studies have demonstrated the impressive potential of this tactic if you know where to look (learn more here).

With all of this in mind, let’s take a gander at the key action regarding Simon Property Group, Inc (NYSE:SPG).

What have hedge funds been doing with Simon Property Group, Inc (NYSE:SPG)?

Heading into 2013, a total of 22 of the hedge funds we track were bullish in this stock, a change of -21% from the third quarter. With hedge funds’ capital changing hands, there exists a few key hedge fund managers who were boosting their holdings considerably.

Of the funds we track, AEW Capital Management, managed by Jeffrey Furber, holds the biggest position in Simon Property Group, Inc (NYSE:SPG). AEW Capital Management has a $509 million position in the stock, comprising 13.4% of its 13F portfolio. Coming in second is Ken Griffin of Citadel Investment Group, with a $323 million position; 0% of its 13F portfolio is allocated to the company. Some other hedge funds that are bullish include Ken Heebner’s Capital Growth Management, D. E. Shaw’s D E Shaw and Phill Gross and Robert Atchinson’s Adage Capital Management.

Due to the fact that Simon Property Group, Inc (NYSE:SPG) has faced a declination in interest from the entirety of the hedge funds we track, we can see that there was a specific group of hedge funds that slashed their full holdings last quarter. Intriguingly, Israel Englander’s Millennium Management dumped the biggest position of the 450+ funds we key on, valued at about $15 million in call options, and Jim Simons of Renaissance Technologies was right behind this move, as the fund cut about $9 million worth. These moves are important to note, as aggregate hedge fund interest fell by 6 funds last quarter.

How are insiders trading Simon Property Group, Inc (NYSE:SPG)?

Bullish insider trading is most useful when the company in focus has seen transactions within the past half-year. Over the last half-year time frame, Simon Property Group, Inc (NYSE:SPG) has seen 2 unique insiders buying, and 4 insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

With the returns shown by the aforementioned studies, retail investors must always watch hedge fund and insider trading activity, and Simon Property Group, Inc (NYSE:SPG) is no exception.

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