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Do Hedge Funds and Insiders Love Winnebago Industries, Inc. (WGO)?

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If you were to ask many traders, hedge funds are viewed as useless, old financial vehicles of a period lost to current times. Although there are over 8,000 hedge funds in operation currently, Insider Monkey aim at the leaders of this group, close to 525 funds. It is assumed that this group controls the lion’s share of the smart money’s total capital, and by paying attention to their highest quality equity investments, we’ve come up with a few investment strategies that have historically beaten the S&P 500. Our small-cap hedge fund strategy outstripped the S&P 500 index by 18 percentage points per annum for a decade in our back tests, and since we’ve started sharing our picks with our subscribers at the end of August 2012, we have trumped the S&P 500 index by 33 percentage points in 11 months (explore the details and some picks here).

Just as useful, bullish insider trading activity is another way to look at the stock market universe. Just as you’d expect, there are a number of stimuli for an executive to cut shares of his or her company, but just one, very obvious reason why they would behave bullishly. Several academic studies have demonstrated the market-beating potential of this method if “monkeys” understand what to do (learn more here).

Winnebago Industries, Inc. (NYSE:WGO)

Thus, let’s study the recent info surrounding Winnebago Industries, Inc. (NYSE:WGO).

What does the smart money think about Winnebago Industries, Inc. (NYSE:WGO)?

At Q2’s end, a total of 14 of the hedge funds we track were long in this stock, a change of 27% from one quarter earlier. With hedge funds’ positions undergoing their usual ebb and flow, there exists a select group of key hedge fund managers who were boosting their stakes substantially.

According to our 13F database, Royce & Associates, managed by Chuck Royce, holds the biggest position in Winnebago Industries, Inc. (NYSE:WGO). Royce & Associates has a $45.4 million position in the stock, comprising 0.1% of its 13F portfolio. Coming in second is Jeffrey Gendell of Tontine Asset Management, with a $8.5 million position; the fund has 1.6% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Other hedge funds that hold long positions include Richard Driehaus’s Driehaus Capital, Robert B. Gillam’s McKinley Capital Management and David Keidan’s Buckingham Capital Management.

As one would understandably expect, specific money managers were leading the bulls’ herd. Royce & Associates, managed by Chuck Royce, established the biggest position in Winnebago Industries, Inc. (NYSE:WGO). Royce & Associates had 45.4 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. Jeffrey Gendell’s Tontine Asset Management also initiated a $8.5 million position during the quarter. The other funds with new positions in the stock are Richard Driehaus’s Driehaus Capital, Robert B. Gillam’s McKinley Capital Management, and David Keidan’s Buckingham Capital Management.

How have insiders been trading Winnebago Industries, Inc. (NYSE:WGO)?

Insider buying is most useful when the company in focus has experienced transactions within the past 180 days. Over the latest half-year time period, Winnebago Industries, Inc. (NYSE:WGO) has experienced zero unique insiders purchasing, and zero insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

We’ll also review the relationship between both of these indicators in other stocks similar to Winnebago Industries, Inc. (NYSE:WGO). These stocks are Polaris Industries Inc. (NYSE:PII), Thor Industries, Inc. (NYSE:THO), Drew Industries, Inc. (NYSE:DW), Federal Signal Corporation (NYSE:FSS), and Arctic Cat Inc (NASDAQ:ACAT). This group of stocks are the members of the recreational vehicles industry and their market caps are similar to WGO’s market cap.

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