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50 Stocks That Matter Most To Hedge Funds

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Goldman Sachs publishes a quarterly report based on 13F filings. This is a comprehensive report that takes time to prepare. The data team at Insider Monkey finished processing 13F filings and we had some time on our hands. So, we decided not to wait for Goldman Sachs to publish its report. After all, its methodology is pretty straightforward. Goldman’s hedge fund VIP List “contains the 50 stocks that appear most frequently among the top 10 holdings of fundamentally-driven hedge fund portfolios.” Insider Monkey is probably more selective in its hedge fund list but it is very likely that at least 90% of the hedge funds are in the same list. Identifying the top 10 holdings of a hedge fund is a no-brainer. We considered only top 10 stock holdings of each hedge fund and excluded options or convertible notes positions.

We also noticed that focusing on the top 10 positions of a hedge fund is quite arbitrary. Does a hedge fund really have 10 great ideas every quarter? Our experience shows that a good hedge fund can come up with 2-3 good ideas every year. So, we decided to compile other VIP Stock Lists that are based on each hedge fund’s top 5, top 3, top 2, and top holdings. If the same names consistently come up in our list, then we can eliminate the arbitrariness of the “top 10” positions.


We didn’t have time to conduct back tests on these VIP Lists. Goldman claims that its VIP list managed to outperform the market by about 3 percentage points per year between 2001 and 2010. We think this number could be improved by restricting the list to the top 2-3 positions of hedge funds.

This article has 5 tables. The first table is an approximation for Goldman’s VIP List. Actavis plc (NYSE:ACT), Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), and Allergan, Inc. (NYSE:AGN) are the top three stocks. We also compiled the list of 10 most popular stocks among hedge funds, but Allergan wasn’t in the top 3 in that list. Goldman’s VIP List is more similar to our billionaires’ top stocks list. Facebook ranks number 4 in Goldman’s list whereas it wasn’t among the top 10 in the billionaires’ list. This indicates that we get a slightly different list every time we use a slightly different criteria. One interesting stock that showed up in Goldman’s list is Covidien plc (NYSE:COV). It isn’t one of the top 30 stocks among all hedge funds (no restrictions), yet it shows up in this list. This means hedge funds are more likely to place a large bet on Covidien than a small one.

Company Name Ticker Top 10 Holding Value (x1000)
Actavis Inc. ACT 57 9325351
Apple Inc. AAPL 52 16106272
Allergan Inc. AGN 52 15363015
Facebook Inc. FB 48 4962961
American Airlines Group Inc. AAL 45 3808322
Citigroup Inc. C 45 6338888
Covidien plc. COV 45 9396613
Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. VRX 40 11092766
Baidu Inc. BIDU 38 5378019
Ally Financial Inc. ALLY 37 4710267
Liberty Global plc LBTYK 37 7204701
Microsoft Corporation MSFT 36 13387143
American International Group Inc. AIG 35 7982485
Micron Technology Inc. MU 35 4975580
Time Warner Cable Inc TWC 34 6805400
Delta Air Lines Inc. DAL 31 4189120
Alibaba Group Holding Limited BABA 29 4543248
Yahoo! Inc. YHOO 29 3859147
Air Products and Chemicals Inc. APD 28 7254865
Liberty Interactive Corporation QVCA 28 1866281
DIRECTV DTV 27 8551520
General Motors Company GM 27 1833335
Cheniere Energy Inc. LNG 27 5232694
Charter Communications Inc. CHTR 26 4183112
Wells Fargo & Company WFC 26 31227350
Berkshire Hathaway Inc. BRK-B 25 18250347
Gilead Sciences Inc. GILD 25 2025365
Google Inc. GOOG 24 1719116
Northstar Realty Finance Corp. NRF 23 870417
Bank of America Corporation BAC 22 3501114
eBay Inc. EBAY 22 8125003
Google Inc. GOOGL 22 1393933
Mastercard Incorporated MA 22 5307368
NorthStar Asset Management Group Inc. NSAM 22 1108685
SunEdison Inc. SUNE 22 2047856
Dollar General Corporation DG 21 4248491
DISH Network Corporation DISH 20 1229867
Constellation Brands Inc STZ 20 2403496
Tribune Media Company TRCO 20 2701249
Cubist Pharmaceuticals Inc. CBST 19 1818658
Twenty-First Century Fox Inc. FOXA 19 3987785
CBS Corporation CBS 18 3005426
Hertz Global Holdings Inc HTZ 18 4265268
Liberty Global plc LBTYA 18 801513
Macquarie Infrastructure Company LLC MIC 18 1265133
The Priceline Group Inc. PCLN 18 3357516
Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Limited TEVA 18 2397804
Visteon Corporation VC 18 998704
Brookdale Senior Living Inc. BKD 17 1084378
EMC Corporation EMC 17 2683759
Pfizer Inc. PFE 17 2712800
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