Investors Real Estate Trust (IRET): Are Hedge Funds Right About This Stock?

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Investors Real Estate Trust (NYSE:IRET) shareholders have witnessed an increase in enthusiasm from smart money of late.

To the average investor, there are many indicators shareholders can use to analyze Mr. Market. A pair of the most useful 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 top fund managers can outperform their index-focused peers by a significant margin (see just how much).

Investors Real Estate Trust (NYSE:IRET)

Just as key, bullish insider trading sentiment is a second way to parse down the world of equities. Just as you’d expect, there are lots of reasons for a corporate insider to drop shares of his or her company, but just one, very clear reason why they would initiate a purchase. Various empirical studies have demonstrated the impressive potential of this method if shareholders understand where to look (learn more here).

With all of this in mind, it’s important to take a gander at the key action regarding Investors Real Estate Trust (NYSE:IRET).

What does the smart money think about Investors Real Estate Trust (NYSE:IRET)?

At the end of the first quarter, a total of 6 of the hedge funds we track were long in this stock, a change of 20% from the previous quarter. With hedgies’ positions undergoing their usual ebb and flow, there exists an “upper tier” of notable hedge fund managers who were upping their holdings considerably.

Of the funds we track, Renaissance Technologies, managed by Jim Simons, holds the biggest position in Investors Real Estate Trust (NYSE:IRET). Renaissance Technologies has a $4 million position in the stock, comprising less than 0.1%% of its 13F portfolio. The second largest stake is held by AQR Capital Management, managed by Cliff Asness, which held a $3.3 million position; the fund has less than 0.1%% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Some other hedgies that hold long positions include Israel Englander’s Millennium Management, Matthew Tewksbury’s Stevens Capital Management and John Overdeck and David Siegel’s Two Sigma Advisors.

Now, specific money managers were leading the bulls’ herd. Stevens Capital Management, managed by Matthew Tewksbury, initiated the biggest position in Investors Real Estate Trust (NYSE:IRET). Stevens Capital Management had 0.2 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. John Overdeck and David Siegel’s Two Sigma Advisors also initiated a $0.2 million position during the quarter. The only other fund with a brand new IRET position is Thomas Bailard’s Bailard Inc.

What do corporate executives and insiders think about Investors Real Estate Trust (NYSE:IRET)?

Bullish insider trading is particularly usable when the company in focus has experienced transactions within the past 180 days. Over the latest 180-day time period, Investors Real Estate Trust (NYSE:IRET) has seen 7 unique insiders purchasing, and zero insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

Let’s also review hedge fund and insider activity in other stocks similar to Investors Real Estate Trust (NYSE:IRET). These stocks are Colony Financial Inc (NYSE:CLNY), iStar Financial Inc. (NYSE:SFI), Crexus Investment Corp (NYSE:CXS), Capstead Mortgage Corporation (NYSE:CMO), and Cousins Properties Inc (NYSE:CUZ). This group of stocks are in the reit – diversified industry and their market caps match IRET’s market cap.

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