Metlife Inc (MET): Insiders Aren’t Crazy About It

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Metlife Inc (NYSE:MET) investors should be aware of an increase in hedge fund interest lately.

Metlife

In the 21st century investor’s toolkit, there are many indicators market participants can use to watch stocks. Two of the most useful are hedge fund and insider trading activity. At Insider Monkey, our studies have shown that, historically, those who follow the best picks of the elite fund managers can beat their index-focused peers by a significant margin (see just how much).

Just as key, positive insider trading sentiment is another way to break down the financial markets. Just as you’d expect, there are lots of stimuli for a bullish insider to cut shares of his or her company, but just one, very obvious reason why they would buy. Several empirical studies have demonstrated the valuable potential of this method if investors know where to look (learn more here).

With these “truths” under our belt, it’s important to take a glance at the latest action regarding Metlife Inc (NYSE:MET).

How are hedge funds trading Metlife Inc (NYSE:MET)?

In preparation for this quarter, a total of 56 of the hedge funds we track held long positions in this stock, a change of 8% from one quarter earlier. With hedgies’ positions undergoing their usual ebb and flow, there exists a few noteworthy hedge fund managers who were increasing their holdings considerably.

Of the funds we track, Pzena Investment Management, managed by Richard S. Pzena, holds the largest position in Metlife Inc (NYSE:MET). Pzena Investment Management has a $311 million position in the stock, comprising 2.2% of its 13F portfolio. Coming in second is Lee Ainslie of Maverick Capital, with a $181.8 million position; the fund has 2.4% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Other hedge funds that are bullish include David Tepper’s Appaloosa Management LP, Jeffrey Tannenbaum’s Fir Tree and John A. Levin’s Levin Capital Strategies.

As industrywide interest jumped, key money managers were leading the bulls’ herd. Maverick Capital, managed by Lee Ainslie, initiated the most valuable position in Metlife Inc (NYSE:MET). Maverick Capital had 181.8 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. Jeffrey Tannenbaum’s Fir Tree also made a $155.7 million investment in the stock during the quarter. The other funds with new positions in the stock are Doug Silverman and Alexander Klabin’s Senator Investment Group, Jeffrey Altman’s Owl Creek Asset Management, and Robert Pohly’s Samlyn Capital.

Insider trading activity in Metlife Inc (NYSE:MET)

Insider buying is best served when the company in focus has seen transactions within the past 180 days. Over the last six-month time frame, Metlife Inc (NYSE:MET) has experienced zero unique insiders purchasing, and 3 insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

Let’s also examine hedge fund and insider activity in other stocks similar to Metlife Inc (NYSE:MET). These stocks are China Life Insurance Company Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:LFC), Manulife Financial Corporation (USA) (NYSE:MFC), Prudential Financial Inc (NYSE:PRU), ING Groep N.V. (ADR) (NYSE:ING), and Prudential Public Limited Company (ADR) (NYSE:PUK). This group of stocks are in the life insurance industry and their market caps are similar to MET’s market cap.

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