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Is AEGON N.V. (ADR) (AEG) Going to Burn These Hedge Funds?

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AEGON N.V. (ADR) (NYSE:AEG)AEGON N.V. (ADR) (NYSE:AEG) was in 8 hedge funds’ portfolio at the end of March. AEG shareholders have witnessed a decrease in enthusiasm from smart money of late. There were 8 hedge funds in our database with AEG holdings at the end of the previous quarter.

In the eyes of most market participants, hedge funds are assumed to be slow, old investment vehicles of the past. While there are over 8000 funds in operation today, we at Insider Monkey look at the leaders of this group, close to 450 funds. It is estimated that this group controls the lion’s share of all hedge funds’ total asset base, and by monitoring their top investments, we have determined a few investment strategies that have historically outpaced the market. Our small-cap hedge fund strategy outperformed the S&P 500 index by 18 percentage points per annum 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 topped the S&P 500 index by 23.3 percentage points in 8 months (check out a sample of our picks).

Just as beneficial, optimistic insider trading activity is another way to parse down the stock market universe. Obviously, there are many reasons for a bullish insider to downsize shares of his or her company, but just one, very simple reason why they would initiate a purchase. Various academic studies have demonstrated the market-beating potential of this tactic if investors understand what to do (learn more here).

Consequently, let’s take a peek at the latest action surrounding AEGON N.V. (ADR) (NYSE:AEG).

Hedge fund activity in AEGON N.V. (ADR) (NYSE:AEG)

Heading into Q2, a total of 8 of the hedge funds we track held long positions in this stock, a change of 0% from one quarter earlier. With hedgies’ capital changing hands, there exists an “upper tier” of notable hedge fund managers who were increasing their stakes meaningfully.

When looking at the hedgies we track, Arrowstreet Capital, managed by Peter Rathjens, Bruce Clarke and John Campbell, holds the biggest position in AEGON N.V. (ADR) (NYSE:AEG). Arrowstreet Capital has a $15.4 million position in the stock, comprising 0.1% of its 13F portfolio. Coming in second is Shah Capital Management, managed by Himanshu H. Shah, which held a $2.5 million position; 2.8% of its 13F portfolio is allocated to the stock. Some other hedgies that are bullish include John Overdeck and David Siegel’s Two Sigma Advisors, Ken Griffin’s Citadel Investment Group and David Costen Haley’s HBK Investments.

Judging by the fact that AEGON N.V. (ADR) (NYSE:AEG) has witnessed falling interest from the smart money, it’s safe to say that there is a sect of hedge funds that slashed their positions entirely last quarter. At the top of the heap, Jim Simons’s Renaissance Technologies sold off the largest position of the “upper crust” of funds we track, comprising an estimated $0.1 million in stock. These bearish behaviors are intriguing to say the least, as total hedge fund interest stayed the same (this is a bearish signal in our experience).

What do corporate executives and insiders think about AEGON N.V. (ADR) (NYSE:AEG)?

Insider purchases made by high-level executives is at its handiest when the company in question has seen transactions within the past half-year. Over the latest six-month time frame, AEGON N.V. (ADR) (NYSE:AEG) has experienced zero unique insiders purchasing, and zero 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 AEGON N.V. (ADR) (NYSE:AEG). These stocks are Prudential Financial Inc (NYSE:PRU), Manulife Financial Corporation (USA) (NYSE:MFC), Torchmark Corporation (NYSE:TMK), Sun Life Financial Inc. (USA) (NYSE:SLF), and Lincoln National Corporation (NYSE:LNC). This group of stocks are the members of the life insurance industry and their market caps match AEG’s market cap.

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