This Metric Says You Are Smart to Sell Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC)

Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC) has seen a decrease in hedge fund interest lately.

In the 21st century investor’s toolkit, there are dozens of metrics market participants can use to monitor the equity markets. A couple of the most useful are hedge fund and insider trading activity. At Insider Monkey, our studies have shown that, historically, those who follow the top picks of the best money managers can beat the S&P 500 by a very impressive amount (see just how much).

Just as beneficial, bullish insider trading sentiment is another way to parse down the marketplace. Just as you’d expect, there are plenty of motivations for a corporate insider to drop shares of his or her company, but only one, very clear reason why they would behave bullishly. Plenty of empirical studies have demonstrated the impressive potential of this method if investors understand what to do (learn more here).

With these “truths” under our belt, we’re going to take a look at the latest action encompassing Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC).

What have hedge funds been doing with Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC)?

At year’s end, a total of 28 of the hedge funds we track were bullish in this stock, a change of -10% from the third quarter. With the smart money’s sentiment swirling, there exists a few noteworthy hedge fund managers who were boosting their stakes meaningfully.

Of the funds we track, Citadel Investment Group, managed by Ken Griffin, holds the largest position in Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC). Citadel Investment Group has a $236 million position in the stock, comprising 0.4% of its 13F portfolio. The second largest stake is held by SAC Capital Advisors, managed by Steven Cohen, which held a $154 million position; the fund has 0.8% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Other hedgies that are bullish include Dan Loeb’s Third Point, Peter Adam Hochfelder’s Brahman Capital and Cliff Asness’s AQR Capital Management.

Since Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC) has witnessed bearish sentiment from the smart money, we can see that there is a sect of money managers that slashed their full holdings at the end of the year. Intriguingly, Robert Emil Zoellner’s Alpine Associates sold off the largest position of the “upper crust” of funds we watch, valued at an estimated $46 million in stock.. Anand Parekh’s fund, Alyeska Investment Group, also dumped its stock, about $14 million worth. These bearish behaviors are intriguing to say the least, as total hedge fund interest was cut by 3 funds at the end of the year.

What do corporate executives and insiders think about Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC)?

Insider buying is at its handiest when the primary stock in question has experienced transactions within the past half-year. Over the last six-month time frame, Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC) has experienced zero unique insiders purchasing, and 8 insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

With the returns demonstrated by Insider Monkey’s time-tested strategies, retail investors must always pay attention to hedge fund and insider trading activity, and Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC) applies perfectly to this mantra.

Click here to learn more about Insider Monkey’s Hedge Fund Newsletter

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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