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Plains Exploration & Production Company (PXP): Insiders Aren’t Crazy About It

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Plains Exploration & Production Company (NYSE:PXP) was in 43 hedge funds’ portfolio at the end of March. PXP shareholders have witnessed an increase in activity from the world’s largest hedge funds recently. There were 41 hedge funds in our database with PXP positions at the end of the previous quarter.

Plains Exploration & Production Company (NYSE:PXP)

In the financial world, there are tons of gauges shareholders can use to monitor their holdings. A duo of the most underrated are hedge fund and insider trading movement. At Insider Monkey, our studies have shown that, historically, those who follow the best picks of the top fund managers can trounce the S&P 500 by a significant amount (see just how much).

Just as key, positive insider trading sentiment is a second way to parse down the marketplace. As the old adage goes: there are plenty of motivations for an executive to downsize shares of his or her company, but only one, very simple reason why they would behave bullishly. Many academic studies have demonstrated the impressive potential of this tactic if shareholders understand where to look (learn more here).

Keeping this in mind, it’s important to take a glance at the latest action encompassing Plains Exploration & Production Company (NYSE:PXP).

What have hedge funds been doing with Plains Exploration & Production Company (NYSE:PXP)?

In preparation for this quarter, a total of 43 of the hedge funds we track held long positions in this stock, a change of 5% from the first quarter. With the smart money’s sentiment swirling, there exists an “upper tier” of key hedge fund managers who were boosting their stakes considerably.

Of the funds we track, Paulson & Co, managed by John Paulson, holds the biggest position in Plains Exploration & Production Company (NYSE:PXP). Paulson & Co has a $607.6 million position in the stock, comprising 3.4% of its 13F portfolio. Coming in second is Robert Emil Zoellner of Alpine Associates, with a $183.2 million position; 7.1% of its 13F portfolio is allocated to the company. Remaining hedgies with similar optimism include Daniel S. Och’s OZ Management, David Costen Haley’s HBK Investments and Michael A. Price and Amos Meron’s Empyrean Capital Partners.

As aggregate interest increased, key money managers were breaking ground themselves. OZ Management, managed by Daniel S. Och, created the most valuable position in Plains Exploration & Production Company (NYSE:PXP). OZ Management had 152.3 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. David Costen Haley’s HBK Investments also initiated a $150.1 million position during the quarter. The following funds were also among the new PXP investors: Michael A. Price and Amos Meron’s Empyrean Capital Partners, Nick Niell’s Arrowgrass Capital Partners, and Thomas Steyer’s Farallon Capital.

What do corporate executives and insiders think about Plains Exploration & Production Company (NYSE:PXP)?

Insider buying is at its handiest when the primary stock in question has experienced transactions within the past 180 days. Over the last half-year time period, Plains Exploration & Production Company (NYSE:PXP) has seen zero unique insiders buying, 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 Plains Exploration & Production Company (NYSE:PXP). These stocks are Kosmos Energy Ltd (NYSE:KOS), National Fuel Gas Co. (NYSE:NFG), Baytex Energy Corp (USA) (NYSE:BTE), Denbury Resources Inc. (NYSE:DNR), and Cimarex Energy Co (NYSE:XEC). This group of stocks are in the independent oil & gas industry and their market caps match PXP’s market cap.

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