10 Most Popular Stocks Among Hedge Funds

At the end of last week, we closed the latest round of 13F filings, during which, major institutional investors disclosed their equity portfolios as held at the end of 2013. At Insider Monkey we track hundreds of these filings, as a part of our strategy, in order to identify the most popular picks among hedge funds. According to our research, the most popular small-cap stocks can generate as much as 18% per year in return (Learn more about our strategy here). We have developed a model portfolio, which managed to overcome the S&P 500 by 29 percentage points and returned 47.6% in its first year.

Before we discuss the top picks for the October-December period of 2013, let’s take a look at some of the highlights of the last year. First of all, we noticed that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), which was the ‘hedge fund king’ in the first quarter, has been overtaken by Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG). However, the third quarter brought another development, with General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) raising on the top of the list. In this way, at the end of the fourth quarter, General Motors still remained the favorite among hedge funds, with 183 of them holding shares at the end of 2013. Without any further ado, let’s take a look at the 10 most popular stocks among hedge funds.

Berkshire Hathaway

1. As it was mentioned above, General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) remained the leader over the quarter and 140 hedge funds disclosed the company in their equity portfolio in their latest 13F filings. One of the biggest shareholders of the company is Warren Buffett‘s Berkshire Hathaway, which holds 40.0 million shares, worth $1.63 billion. Berkshire initiated its position in General Motors in the first quarter of 2012, initially holding 10 million shares.

David Einhorn’s Greenlight Capital is another investor, which revealed a $696.73 million stake, which amasses 17.05 million shares. Overall, the number of hedge funds that disclosed holding shares of General Motors, has gone up from 140 at the end of September.

2. Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) has also remained on its previous spot, being the second most popular stock. At the end of 2013, 183 hedge funds revealed holding shares of this technology giant, up from 139 funds in the previous quarter. One of the significant shareholders of the company is Eagle Capital Management, led by Boykin Curry, which reported holding 800,000 shares, slightly up, by around 3,800 shares over the quarter. However, one of the most bullish “hedgies” is Ken Griffin, with Citadel Investment Group reporting raising the stake to 710,600 shares, by 605,100 shares during the October-December period.

3. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has also gained some ground, with 160 hedge funds holding shares of the company in the latest round of 13F filings, versus 132 funds at the end of September. One of the largest shareholders of Apple is Carl Icahn, who revealed ownership of 4.7 million shares at the end of 2013. Icahn upped his stake in the company by 855,700 shares. However, the most bullish again was Citadel, which added around 1.1 million shares of Apple to its equity portfolio during the fourth quarter.

4. On the fourth spot is American International Group Inc (NYSE:AIG). In their latest 13F filings, 146 hedge funds revealed holding shares of AIG, in comparison with 131 in the previous quarter. Bruce Berkowitz‘s Fairholme is still the largest shareholder of AIG, even though the fund dumped around 5.2 million shares during the quarter.

5. Slightly less, 143 hedge funds reported holding Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C) in their equity portfolios. Their number, however, increased significantly, from 115 reporting stakes as at the end of September. Ken Fisher and Fisher Asset Management continued their bullish streak and added 116,400 shares, raising the stake to 11.11 million shares, valued at $579.1 million. In the third quarter, Fisher almost doubled its stake in Citigroup.

6. Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) managed to climb up one position amid 120 hedge funds reporting the company in their 13F, versus 104 in the previous round of filings. Jeffrey Ubben’s ValueAct Capital, after adding over 9.0 million shares of Microsoft during the third quarter, reported an unchanged stake with 66.87 million shares, worth $2.5 billion in aggregate.

7. After sharing the sixth and seventh spot with Microsoft in the previous quarter, JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM) was less lucky in the following three months and, with 118 hedge funds disclosing stakes in the company, it remained on the seventh spot. One of the most bullish hedge funds has been Paul Ruddock And Steve Heinz’s Lansdowne Partners, which after adding around 2.1 million shares, became the largest shareholder among the funds tracked by us. Lansdowne reported a $1.23 million stake in JPMorgan, which amasses 20.77 million shares.

8. On the eight position comes Time Warner Cable Inc (NYSE:TWC). The company got into the top 10 list after 115 hedge funds reported holding shares, versus just 73 previously. Time Warner Cable plans to merge with Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA), in a deal that is supposed to create the largest cable operator in the U.S. John Paulson‘s Paulson & Co has been one of the most bullish investors and raised its stake by 1.98 million shares to 5.98 million.

9. Hertz Global Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:HTZ) also made the list in the fourth quarter. York Capital Management, led by James Dinan, reported a $345.3 million stake in the company, which amasses 12.06 million shares. In total, 109 hedge funds mentioned the company in the latest round of 13F filings, up from 87 previously.

10. And the 10th most popular stock among hedge funds is represented by Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC), in which 107 hedge funds disclosed stakes, including Fairholme, which holds $1.55 billion worth of shares. In the previous quarter 91 hedge funds reported holding shares of Bank of America.

Disclosure: none

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