Do Hedge Funds Love Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (ABX)?

The worries about the economic slowdown in China and the ongoing uncertainty about the path of interest-rate increases triggered several waves of equity sell-offs during the third quarter. Of course, most hedge funds and other asset managers had to stomach substantial losses during the bloody three-month period, which might have caused some to consider fleeing the U.S. equity markets. Interestingly, smaller-cap stocks registered higher losses than large-capitalization stocks during the September quarter, suggesting that institutional investors heavily discarded seemingly riskier equities amid high uncertainty and turmoil. In fact, the Russell 2000 Index lost 11.9% in the third quarter, while the Standard and Poor’s 500 benchmark declined a mere 6.4%. This article will lay out and discuss the hedge fund and institutional investor sentiment towards Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX).

Is Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX) a first-rate stock to buy now? The best stock pickers are turning less bullish. The number of bullish hedge fund bets decreased by 2 lately. At the end of this article, we will also compare Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX) to other stocks including HCC Insurance Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:HCC), Willis Group Holdings PLC (NYSE:WSH), and News Corp (NASDAQ:NWSA) to get a better sense of its popularity.

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At the moment, there are a lot of gauges stock market investors can use to evaluate their holdings. A duo of the most under-the-radar gauges are hedge fund and insider trading sentiment. We have shown that, historically, those who follow the best picks of the best money managers can trounce the broader indices by a solid amount (see the details here).

Now, we’re going to take a glance at the new action surrounding Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX).

Hedge fund activity in Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX)

At the end of the third quarter, a total of 40 of the hedge funds tracked by Insider Monkey held long positions in this stock, a drop of 5% from the second quarter. With hedgies’ positions undergoing their usual ebb and flow, there exists an “upper tier” of notable hedge fund managers who were upping their stakes meaningfully (or already accumulated large positions).

When looking at the institutional investors followed by Insider Monkey, Renaissance Technologies holds the most valuable position in Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX). Renaissance Technologies has a $115.1 million position in the stock, comprising 0.3% of its 13F portfolio. Coming in second is Orbis Investment Management, led by William B. Gray, holding a $102.6 million position; the fund has 0.9% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Remaining peers that hold long positions include Phill Gross and Robert Atchinson’s Adage Capital Management, Ross Margolies’ Stelliam Investment Management and David Iben’s Kopernik Global Investors.

Due to the fact that Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX) has experienced falling interest from hedge fund managers, we can see that there were a few hedge funds who sold off their positions entirely last quarter. It’s worth mentioning that David Greenspan’s Slate Path Capital dropped the biggest position of all the hedgies tracked by Insider Monkey, valued at an estimated $143.4 million in stock, and Jonathon Jacobson’s Highfields Capital Management was right behind this move, as the fund dropped about $42.6 million worth. These moves are important to note, as aggregate hedge fund interest dropped by 2 funds last quarter.

Let’s go over hedge fund activity in other stocks – not necessarily in the same industry as Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX) but similarly valued. These stocks are HCC Insurance Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:HCC), Willis Group Holdings PLC (NYSE:WSH), News Corp (NASDAQ:NWSA), and AGL Resources Inc. (NYSE:GAS). This group of stocks’ market caps matches Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX)’s market cap.

Ticker No of HFs with positions Total Value of HF Positions (x1000) Change in HF Position
HCC 30 733428 2
WSH 27 2342118 1
NWSA 35 1126782 -4
GAS 30 528324 2

As you can see, these stocks had an average of 31 hedge funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $1.18 billion. That figure was $938 million in Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX)’s case. News Corp (NASDAQ:NWSA) is the most popular stock in this table. On the other hand, Willis Group Holdings PLC (NYSE:WSH) is the least popular one with only 27 bullish hedge fund positions. Compared to these stocks Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX) is more popular among hedge funds. Considering that hedge funds are fond of this stock in relation to its market cap peers, it may be a good idea to analyze it in detail and potentially include it in your portfolio.