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Hedge Funds Are Selling Signature Bank (SBNY)

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Signature Bank (NASDAQ:SBNY) has experienced a decrease in hedge fund interest lately.

According to most investors, hedge funds are viewed as underperforming, outdated financial vehicles of the past. While there are over 8000 funds with their doors open at the moment, we at Insider Monkey look at the moguls of this club, close to 450 funds. Most estimates calculate that this group oversees the lion’s share of the hedge fund industry’s total asset base, and by tracking their top equity investments, we have spotted a few investment strategies that have historically outperformed Mr. Market. Our small-cap hedge fund strategy outperformed the S&P 500 index by 18 percentage points a 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 23.3 percentage points in 8 months (check out a sample of our picks).

Equally as beneficial, bullish insider trading activity is a second way to parse down the world of equities. There are a number of reasons for a bullish insider to downsize shares of his or her company, but just one, very obvious reason why they would buy. Many empirical studies have demonstrated the market-beating potential of this strategy if “monkeys” understand where to look (learn more here).

Consequently, we’re going to take a gander at the key action regarding Signature Bank (NASDAQ:SBNY).

Hedge fund activity in Signature Bank (NASDAQ:SBNY)

At Q1’s end, a total of 12 of the hedge funds we track were long in this stock, a change of 0% from the first quarter. With hedge funds’ positions undergoing their usual ebb and flow, there exists an “upper tier” of noteworthy hedge fund managers who were upping their stakes substantially.

Signature Bank (NASDAQ:SBNY)Of the funds we track, Columbus Circle Investors, managed by Donald Chiboucis, holds the most valuable position in Signature Bank (NASDAQ:SBNY). Columbus Circle Investors has a $65.2 million position in the stock, comprising 0.5% of its 13F portfolio. On Columbus Circle Investors’s heels is McKinley Capital Management, managed by Robert B. Gillam, which held a $31 million position; the fund has 1.4% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Other hedge funds that are bullish include Ken Griffin’s Citadel Investment Group, Cliff Asness’s AQR Capital Management and Jim Simons’s Renaissance Technologies.

Judging by the fact that Signature Bank (NASDAQ:SBNY) has experienced bearish sentiment from hedge fund managers, we can see that there were a few fund managers who were dropping their positions entirely heading into Q2. At the top of the heap, David Stemerman’s Conatus Capital Management dumped the biggest stake of the 450+ funds we watch, totaling about $36.1 million in stock.. Neil Chriss’s fund, Hutchin Hill Capital, also dropped its stock, about $3.2 million worth. These bearish behaviors are interesting, as total hedge fund interest stayed the same (this is a bearish signal in our experience).

How are insiders trading Signature Bank (NASDAQ:SBNY)?

Insider purchases made by high-level executives is at its handiest when the company in question has seen transactions within the past six months. Over the latest 180-day time period, Signature Bank (NASDAQ:SBNY) has seen zero unique insiders purchasing, and zero insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

Let’s also examine hedge fund and insider activity in other stocks similar to Signature Bank (NASDAQ:SBNY). These stocks are National Penn Bancshares (NASDAQ:NPBC), Valley National Bancorp (NYSE:VLY), Webster Financial Corporation (NYSE:WBS), Susquehanna Bancshares Inc (NASDAQ:SUSQ), and Fulton Financial Corp (NASDAQ:FULT). All of these stocks are in the regional – northeast banks industry and their market caps are similar to SBNY’s market cap.

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