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This Metric Says You Are Smart to Buy W.W. Grainger, Inc. (GWW)

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Is W.W. Grainger, Inc. (NYSE:GWW) ready to rally soon? Prominent investors are in an optimistic mood. The number of bullish hedge fund positions moved up by 1 recently.

In today’s marketplace, there are dozens of gauges market participants can use to track stocks. A couple of the most under-the-radar are hedge fund and insider trading interest. At Insider Monkey, our research analyses have shown that, historically, those who follow the best picks of the best investment managers can outperform the broader indices by a healthy amount (see just how much).

W.W. Grainger, Inc.Equally as key, positive insider trading activity is another way to break down the financial markets. As the old adage goes: there are lots of stimuli for an executive to drop shares of his or her company, but just one, very clear reason why they would buy. Various academic studies have demonstrated the valuable potential of this tactic if you know where to look (learn more here).

With these “truths” under our belt, it’s important to take a gander at the latest action encompassing W.W. Grainger, Inc. (NYSE:GWW).

How have hedgies been trading W.W. Grainger, Inc. (NYSE:GWW)?

In preparation for this quarter, a total of 26 of the hedge funds we track held long positions in this stock, a change of 4% from the first quarter. With the smart money’s capital changing hands, there exists a select group of noteworthy hedge fund managers who were boosting their holdings substantially.

According to our comprehensive database, Generation Investment Management, managed by David Blood and Al Gore, holds the most valuable position in W.W. Grainger, Inc. (NYSE:GWW). Generation Investment Management has a $234.3 million position in the stock, comprising 4.8% of its 13F portfolio. On Generation Investment Management’s heels is Steven Cohen of SAC Capital Advisors, with a $122.9 million position; 0.6% of its 13F portfolio is allocated to the company. Some other hedge funds with similar optimism include Ken Griffin’s Citadel Investment Group, Jim Simons’s Renaissance Technologies and Phill Gross and Robert Atchinson’s Adage Capital Management.

As aggregate interest increased, specific money managers have been driving this bullishness. Stevens Capital Management, managed by Matthew Tewksbury, established the largest position in W.W. Grainger, Inc. (NYSE:GWW). Stevens Capital Management had 10.4 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. Robert Bishop’s Impala Asset Management also made a $7.9 million investment in the stock during the quarter. The other funds with brand new GWW positions are Scott Burney’s Bluefin Investment Management, Ray Dalio’s Bridgewater Associates, and Jane Mendillo’s Harvard Management Co.

How are insiders trading W.W. Grainger, Inc. (NYSE:GWW)?

Bullish insider trading is particularly usable when the company in question has experienced transactions within the past half-year. Over the last half-year time frame, W.W. Grainger, Inc. (NYSE:GWW) has experienced zero unique insiders buying, and 10 insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

Let’s check out hedge fund and insider activity in other stocks similar to W.W. Grainger, Inc. (NYSE:GWW). These stocks are Wesco Aircraft Holdings Inc (NYSE:WAIR), Applied Industrial Technologies (NYSE:AIT), WESCO International, Inc. (NYSE:WCC), MSC Industrial Direct Co Inc (NYSE:MSM), and Airgas, Inc. (NYSE:ARG). This group of stocks are in the industrial equipment wholesale industry and their market caps resemble GWW’s market cap.

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