Hedge Funds Are Crazy About GNC Holdings Inc (GNC)

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GNC Holdings Inc (NYSE:GNC) investors should pay attention to an increase in hedge fund sentiment of late.

In the financial world, there are tons of indicators shareholders can use to track their holdings. A couple of the most innovative are hedge fund and insider trading interest. At Insider Monkey, our studies have shown that, historically, those who follow the best picks of the best investment managers can beat their index-focused peers by a solid amount (see just how much).

Equally as beneficial, bullish insider trading activity is a second way to break down the investments you’re interested in. Obviously, there are lots of reasons for an insider to cut shares of his or her company, but just one, very obvious reason why they would initiate a purchase. Many empirical studies have demonstrated the useful potential of this method if shareholders understand what to do (learn more here).

Now, let’s take a look at the key action regarding GNC Holdings Inc (NYSE:GNC).

How have hedgies been trading GNC Holdings Inc (NYSE:GNC)?

Heading into Q2, a total of 37 of the hedge funds we track were long in this stock, a change of 19% from the previous quarter. With hedgies’ positions undergoing their usual ebb and flow, there exists a select group of noteworthy hedge fund managers who were boosting their stakes substantially.

GNC Holdings Inc(NYSE:GNC)When looking at the hedgies we track, Dinakar Singh’s TPG-AXON Management LP had the largest position in GNC Holdings Inc (NYSE:GNC), worth close to $183.5 million, accounting for 9.2% of its total 13F portfolio. Coming in second is Steven Cohen of SAC Capital Advisors, with a $168 million position; the fund has 0.8% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Remaining peers that are bullish include Doug Silverman and Alexander Klabin’s Senator Investment Group, Alexander Mitchell’s Scopus Asset Management and SAC Subsidiary’s Sigma Capital Management.

Now, key money managers have jumped into GNC Holdings Inc (NYSE:GNC) headfirst. Senator Investment Group, managed by Doug Silverman and Alexander Klabin, established the most valuable position in GNC Holdings Inc (NYSE:GNC). Senator Investment Group had 80.5 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. SAC Subsidiary’s Sigma Capital Management also made a $62.8 million investment in the stock during the quarter. The following funds were also among the new GNC investors: Jeffrey Altman’s Owl Creek Asset Management, James Dondero’s Highland Capital Management, and Manish Chopra’s Tiger Veda.

What have insiders been doing with GNC Holdings Inc (NYSE:GNC)?

Bullish insider trading is most useful when the company in focus has seen transactions within the past six months. Over the last six-month time period, GNC Holdings Inc (NYSE:GNC) has experienced zero unique insiders buying, and 8 insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

Let’s go over hedge fund and insider activity in other stocks similar to GNC Holdings Inc (NYSE:GNC). These stocks are CVS Caremark Corporation (NYSE:CVS), Walgreen Company (NYSE:WAG), PharMerica Corporation (NYSE:PMC), BioScrip Inc. (NASDAQ:BIOS), and Rite Aid Corporation (NYSE:RAD). This group of stocks belong to the drug stores industry and their market caps are closest to GNC’s market cap.

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