Hedge Funds Are Dumping Freescale Semiconductor Ltd (FSL)

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Freescale Semiconductor Ltd (NYSE:FSL) was in 7 hedge funds’ portfolio at the end of December. FSL has experienced a decrease in hedge fund interest recently. There were 16 hedge funds in our database with FSL positions at the end of the previous quarter.

In the eyes of most market participants, hedge funds are perceived as unimportant, outdated investment tools of yesteryear. While there are more than 8000 funds in operation today, we at Insider Monkey look at the upper echelon of this group, about 450 funds. Most estimates calculate that this group has its hands on the lion’s share of the smart money’s total asset base, and by keeping an eye on their highest performing investments, we have discovered a few investment strategies that have historically outpaced Mr. Market. Our small-cap hedge fund strategy outperformed the S&P 500 index by 18 percentage points per year 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 beaten the S&P 500 index by 24 percentage points in 7 months (check out a sample of our picks).

SAC CAPITAL ADVISORS

Equally as key, bullish insider trading sentiment is a second way to break down the world of equities. As the old adage goes: there are a variety of stimuli for an executive to drop shares of his or her company, but only one, very clear reason why they would buy. Many empirical studies have demonstrated the market-beating potential of this strategy if shareholders understand what to do (learn more here).

Consequently, let’s take a peek at the latest action surrounding Freescale Semiconductor Ltd (NYSE:FSL).

What have hedge funds been doing with Freescale Semiconductor Ltd (NYSE:FSL)?

At year’s end, a total of 7 of the hedge funds we track were bullish in this stock, a change of -56% from the previous quarter. 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 comprehensive database, Criterion Capital, managed by Christopher Lord, holds the largest position in Freescale Semiconductor Ltd (NYSE:FSL). Criterion Capital has a $5.6 million position in the stock, comprising 0.3% of its 13F portfolio. The second largest stake is held by SAC Capital Advisors, managed by Steven Cohen, which held a $5.3 million position; the fund has less than 0.1%% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Other peers with similar optimism include Peter Rathjens, Bruce Clarke and John Campbell’s Arrowstreet Capital, Louis Bacon’s Moore Global Investments and David Costen Haley’s HBK Investments.

Because Freescale Semiconductor Ltd (NYSE:FSL) has witnessed a declination in interest from the aggregate hedge fund industry, we can see that there was a specific group of hedgies that elected to cut their positions entirely last quarter. Interestingly, Israel Englander’s Millennium Management dropped the largest position of the 450+ funds we track, comprising about $3.8 million in stock.. Carl Tiedemann and Michael Tiedemann’s fund, TIG Advisors, also sold off its stock, about $2.1 million worth. These moves are important to note, as total hedge fund interest was cut by 9 funds last quarter.

What do corporate executives and insiders think about Freescale Semiconductor Ltd (NYSE:FSL)?

Insider trading activity, especially when it’s bullish, is best served when the company in focus has seen transactions within the past 180 days. Over the last six-month time frame, Freescale Semiconductor Ltd (NYSE:FSL) has experienced zero unique insiders buying, and 9 insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

Let’s also examine hedge fund and insider activity in other stocks similar to Freescale Semiconductor Ltd (NYSE:FSL). These stocks are STMicroelectronics N.V. (ADR) (NYSE:STM), Mellanox Technologies, Ltd. (NASDAQ:MLNX), Atmel Corporation (NASDAQ:ATML), AU Optronics Corp. (ADR) (NYSE:AUO), and ON Semiconductor Corp (NASDAQ:ONNN). This group of stocks belong to the semiconductor – broad line industry and their market caps match FSL’s market cap.

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