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Here is What Hedge Funds Think About Stifel Financial Corp. (SF)

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Stifel Financial Corp. (NYSE:SF) shareholders have witnessed a decrease in enthusiasm from smart money of late.

In today’s marketplace, there are tons of gauges market participants can use to monitor the equity markets. Some of the most underrated are hedge fund and insider trading sentiment. At Insider Monkey, our research analyses have shown that, historically, those who follow the best picks of the elite hedge fund managers can outclass the broader indices by a significant amount (see just how much).

Stifel Financial Corp.Equally as beneficial, optimistic insider trading sentiment is a second way to break down the marketplace. As the old adage goes: there are a number of reasons for an upper level exec to downsize shares of his or her company, but just one, very clear reason why they would behave bullishly. Many academic studies have demonstrated the market-beating potential of this method if shareholders understand what to do (learn more here).

With these “truths” under our belt, we’re going to take a glance at the recent action encompassing Stifel Financial Corp. (NYSE:SF).

How are hedge funds trading Stifel Financial Corp. (NYSE:SF)?

At the end of the first quarter, a total of 9 of the hedge funds we track were long in this stock, a change of -25% from the first quarter. With the smart money’s sentiment swirling, there exists an “upper tier” of noteworthy hedge fund managers who were increasing their holdings meaningfully.

Of the funds we track, Chuck Royce’s Royce & Associates had the largest position in Stifel Financial Corp. (NYSE:SF), worth close to $132.7 million, accounting for 0.4% of its total 13F portfolio. On Royce & Associates’s heels is Fisher Asset Management, managed by Ken Fisher, which held a $31.1 million position; the fund has 0.1% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Other hedge funds with similar optimism include Matthew Hulsizer’s PEAK6 Capital Management, Israel Englander’s Millennium Management and Ken Griffin’s Citadel Investment Group.

Since Stifel Financial Corp. (NYSE:SF) has witnessed falling interest from the entirety of the hedge funds we track, we can see that there lies a certain “tier” of hedgies that slashed their positions entirely heading into Q2. It’s worth mentioning that Drew Cupps’s Cupps Capital Management sold off the largest investment of the “upper crust” of funds we monitor, comprising an estimated $3.8 million in stock., and Mike Vranos of Ellington was right behind this move, as the fund dropped about $1 million worth. These moves are important to note, as total hedge fund interest dropped by 3 funds heading into Q2.

Insider trading activity in Stifel Financial Corp. (NYSE:SF)

Insider trading activity, especially when it’s bullish, is particularly usable when the primary stock in question has experienced transactions within the past 180 days. Over the latest 180-day time frame, Stifel Financial Corp. (NYSE:SF) has seen zero unique insiders purchasing, and 2 insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

Let’s also take a look at hedge fund and insider activity in other stocks similar to Stifel Financial Corp. (NYSE:SF). These stocks are Oppenheimer Holdings Inc. (USA) (NYSE:OPY), Knight Capital Group Inc. (NYSE:KCG), Investment Technology Group (NYSE:ITG), Raymond James Financial, Inc. (NYSE:RJF), and Greenhill & Co., Inc. (NYSE:GHL). This group of stocks are in the investment brokerage – regional industry and their market caps match SF’s market cap.

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