This Metric Says You Are Smart to Sell SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ:SPWR)

SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ:SPWR) was in 9 hedge funds' portfolio at the end of the fourth quarter of 2012. SPWR investors should pay attention to a decrease in activity from the world's largest hedge funds recently. There were 13 hedge funds in our database with SPWR positions at the end of the previous quarter.

In the financial world, there are plenty of metrics market participants can use to track the equity markets. A couple of the most underrated are hedge fund and insider trading sentiment. At Insider Monkey, our research analyses have shown that, historically, those who follow the top picks of the best hedge fund managers can outperform the market by a significant amount (see just how much).

SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ:SPWR)Equally as integral, positive insider trading sentiment is a second way to break down the investments you're interested in. Just as you'd expect, there are plenty of reasons for a bullish insider to cut shares of his or her company, but only one, very obvious reason why they would buy. Several academic studies have demonstrated the valuable potential of this strategy if investors understand what to do (learn more here).

With all of this in mind, we're going to take a gander at the key action encompassing SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ:SPWR).

What have hedge funds been doing with SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ:SPWR)?

Heading into 2013, a total of 9 of the hedge funds we track held long positions in this stock, a change of -31% from the previous quarter. With hedge funds' sentiment swirling, there exists a few key hedge fund managers who were upping their stakes considerably.

Of the funds we track, Chuck Royce's Royce & Associates had the biggest position in SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ:SPWR), worth close to $9 million, accounting for 0% of its total 13F portfolio. Sitting at the No. 2 spot is Philip Hempleman of Ardsley Partners, with a $7 million position; 0.1% of its 13F portfolio is allocated to the stock. Remaining hedge funds with similar optimism include John A. Levin's Levin Capital Strategies, Ken Griffin's Citadel Investment Group and D. E. Shaw's D E Shaw.

Because SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ:SPWR) has faced declining sentiment from hedge fund managers, it's safe to say that there exists a select few fund managers that elected to cut their full holdings heading into 2013. At the top of the heap, Peter J. Eichler Jr.'s Aletheia Research and Management dropped the largest stake of all the hedgies we watch, comprising close to $6 million in stock.. Jim Simons's fund, Renaissance Technologies, also dumped its stock, about $1 million worth. These moves are interesting, as aggregate hedge fund interest dropped by 4 funds heading into 2013.

How are insiders trading SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ:SPWR)?

Insider buying is best served when the company in focus has experienced transactions within the past half-year. Over the last six-month time period, SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ:SPWR) has experienced zero unique insiders purchasing, and 3 insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

With the results shown by our studies, retail investors must always pay attention to hedge fund and insider trading sentiment, and SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ:SPWR) is an important part of this process.

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Insider Monkey's small-cap strategy returned 29.2% between September 2012 and February 2013 versus 8.7% for the S&P 500 index. Try it now by clicking the link above.

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