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Apple, Caterpillar, Valeant, and More: Why These Five Stocks Are in the Spotlight

Crude futures are in the green today as traders look forward to today’s rig count release. If rig growth begins slowing or topping, sentiment could improve.

Among the stocks that traders are also watching include several major companies, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT), Valeant Pharmaceuticals Intl Inc (NYSE:VRX), Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. (NYSE:CMG), and Boeing Co (NYSE:BA). In this article, let’s take a closer look at why each stock is trending and analyze what the smart money thinks of each stock.

At Insider Monkey, we’ve developed an investment strategy that has delivered market-beating returns over the past 12 months. Our strategy identifies the 100 best-performing funds of the previous quarter from among the collection of 700+ successful funds that we track in our database, which we accomplish using our returns methodology. We then study the portfolios of those 100 funds using the latest 13F data to uncover the 30 most popular mid-cap stocks (market caps of between $1 billion and $10 billion) among them to hold until the next filing period. This strategy delivered 39.7% gains over the past 12 months and outperformed the 24.1% gain enjoyed by the S&P 500 ETFs. Our enhanced small-cap hedge fund strategy returned more than 45% over the last 12 months and outperformed SPY by more than 30 percentage points over the last 4.5 years (see details here).

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is doubling down on China, having pledged to open two R&D centers in Shanghai and Suzhou. That’s in addition to two previously announced R&D labs in Shenzhen and Beijing. Given that it’s a huge market and the economy there is still growing, staying in the government’s good graces is imperative. By opening two R&D centers in Shanghai and Suzhou, Apple is buying goodwill and making sure Chinese consumers keep buying Apple products. Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway is a major holder of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), having bought a massive stake over the last two quarters.

Follow Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)
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Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) is doing its best to settle the uncertainty around it. The heavy equipment maker recently hired William Barr, a former U.S. Attorney General, to help sort out the IRS probe concerning the company’s export and import practices. Shares of the company have rallied strongly from their lows due to Trump infrastructure stimulus hopes, but have lately retraced due to the uncertainty. Of the 742 elite funds we track, 34 funds owned $1.6 billion of Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) and accounted for 2.90% of the float on December 31, versus 32 funds and $1.46 billion respectively on September 30.

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On the next page, we examine Valeant Pharmaceuticals Intl Inc, Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc, and Boeing Co.

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