As of the close of trading on March 4, the Dow Jones Industrial Average had gained 1.54% year-to-date. Although all of the companies listed in this stock market index can be found in the equity portfolio of numerous hedge funds, some are far more popular than others. According to the information we have gathered, Travelers Companies Inc (NYSE:TRV), E I Du Pont De Nemours And Co (NYSE:DD), 3M Co (NYSE:MMM), Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT), and Boeing Co (NYSE:BA), were the 5 most unpopular Dow stocks amongst the 700+ hedge funds we track.
Travelers Companies Inc (NYSE:TRV) was one of the least popular Dow stocks, with only 31 hedge funds disclosing a position in the company last quarter. The largest shareholder amongst these institutional investors was Mason Hawkins’ Southeastern Asset Management, which owned around 3.68 million shares. Cliff Asness’ AQR Capital Management was also betting on the company, revealing a stake of 1.67 million shares last quarter. Although most investment firms had little faith in the property and casualty insurance firm, Travelers Companies Inc (NYSE:TRV) actually performed quite well last year. Throughout 2014, the stock gained around 17%, thus beating the Dow Jones Industrial Average of 8.16% for the same period. Furthermore, the $34.35 billion market cap company posted earnings of $3.07 per share last quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimate of $2.54 by a wide margin.
E I Du Pont De Nemours And Co (NYSE:DD) appeared in the equity portfolios of 31 hedge funds last quarter. Unlike other investment firms, Nelson Peltz’s Trian Partners was very bullish regarding this company, which ranked as its top pick for the fourth quarter. In its latest 13F filing, Mr. Peltz’s fund disclosed a stake of 24.31 million shares, valued at $1.79 billion. Phillip Gross and Robert Atchinson’s Adage Capital Management also remained optimistic regarding the science and technology company, as it held 877,800 shares, after increasing its holding by 106% last quarter. The hedge funds betting on E I Du Pont De Nemours And Co (NYSE:DD) were surely not disappointed, as the stock gained 16% in 2014.
Out of the 737 funds we track, 33 held a position in 3M Co (NYSE:MMM) by the end of the fourth quarter. The firms backing the company benefited from rising shares, as the stock climbed almost 18% in 2014, and reached a historical high of $170.50 per share at the beginning of March this year. With a holding of 5.98 million shares, First Eagle Investment Management ranked as one of the company’s largest shareholders among institutional investors. Boykin Curry’s Eagle Capital Management also held a significant position in 3M Co (NYSE:MMM) at the end of the last quarter, which amounted to 2.30 million shares, and was valued at around $378 million.