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Hedge Funds Are Betting On Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE:NBL)

Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE:NBL) was in 28 hedge funds’ portfolio at the end of December. NBL has seen an increase in hedge fund interest of late. There were 25 hedge funds in our database with NBL holdings at the end of the previous quarter.

Noble Energy, Inc.

To most stock holders, hedge funds are perceived as underperforming, old financial tools of years past. While there are more than 8000 funds with their doors open at present, we look at the top tier of this group, about 450 funds. Most estimates calculate that this group controls the majority of the hedge fund industry’s total capital, and by paying attention to their top investments, we have brought to light a number of investment strategies that have historically beaten the S&P 500 index. Our small-cap hedge fund strategy outstripped the S&P 500 index by 18 percentage points annually 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 outclassed the S&P 500 index by 25 percentage points in 6.5 month (see all of our picks from August).

Just as key, positive insider trading sentiment is a second way to break down the stock market universe. Obviously, there are a number of motivations for a corporate insider to downsize shares of his or her company, but just one, very obvious reason why they would behave bullishly. Several academic studies have demonstrated the valuable potential of this method if you understand where to look (learn more here).

Now, let’s take a peek at the key action encompassing Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE:NBL).

How have hedgies been trading Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE:NBL)?

In preparation for this year, a total of 28 of the hedge funds we track were bullish in this stock, a change of 12% from one quarter earlier. With hedgies’ positions undergoing their usual ebb and flow, there exists an “upper tier” of notable hedge fund managers who were upping their stakes significantly.

According to our comprehensive database, Eagle Capital Management, managed by Boykin Curry, holds the largest position in Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE:NBL). Eagle Capital Management has a $674 million position in the stock, comprising 4.8% of its 13F portfolio. Sitting at the No. 2 spot is Donald Chiboucis of Columbus Circle Investors, with a $169 million position; the fund has 1.4% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Remaining peers that hold long positions include Steven Cohen’s SAC Capital Advisors, Phill Gross and Robert Atchinson’s Adage Capital Management and Ken Griffin’s Citadel Investment Group.

As one would reasonably expect, key hedge funds have been driving this bullishness. Kingdon Capital, managed by Mark Kingdon, created the most valuable position in Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE:NBL). Kingdon Capital had 20 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. Joe DiMenna’s ZWEIG DIMENNA PARTNERS also initiated a $16 million position during the quarter. The other funds with brand new NBL positions are Mark Kingdon’s Kingdon Capital, Brian Taylor’s Pine River Capital Management, and Perella Weinberg Partners.

Insider trading activity in Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE:NBL)

Bullish insider trading is particularly usable when the company we’re looking at has seen transactions within the past six months. Over the latest half-year time frame, Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE:NBL) has seen zero unique insiders purchasing, and 9 insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

With the results exhibited by Insider Monkey’s strategies, everyday investors must always monitor hedge fund and insider trading activity, and Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE:NBL) applies perfectly to this mantra.

Click here to learn more about Insider Monkey’s Hedge Fund Newsletter

Insider Monkey’s small-cap strategy returned 29.2% between September 2012 and February 2013 versus 8.7% for the S&P 500 index. Try it now by clicking the link above.

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