Executive Shuffling, Bullish Write-ups, and Analyst Rating Changes: Here’s Why These 5 Stocks Are Trending

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Crude futures are 2% lower today as traders take profits on the huge run-up from $40 per barrel. Further hurting crude sentiment this morning is the news that Iraq plans to increase its exports.

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at five stocks that traders are talking about today, which are Monster Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE:MWW), Office Depot Inc (NASDAQ:ODP), Valeant Pharmaceuticals Intl Inc (NYSE:VRX), Zoetis Inc (NYSE:ZTS), and Mattel, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAT). In addition to finding out why these stocks are turning heads we’ll use the latest SEC filings to see how the smart money in our database has been trading each stock.

While there are many metrics that investors can assess in the investment process, the hedge fund sentiment is something that is often overlooked. However, hedge funds and other institutional investors allocate significant resources while making their bets and their long-term focus makes them the perfect investors to emulate. This is supported by our research, which determined that following the small-cap stocks that hedge funds are collectively bullish on can help a smaller investor to beat the S&P 500 by around 95 basis points per month (see the details here).

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Analyst Downgrades Monster Worldwide

Monster Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE:MWW) is 3% in the red today after analysts at Avondale Partners downgraded the stock to ‘Underperform’ from ‘Market Perform’. The analysts also lowered their price target on the stock to $3.40 per share, $0.27 below the stock’s current price. Hedge fund sentiment towards Monster Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE:MWW) was relatively stable during the second quarter. Of the 749 funds that Insider Monkey tracks, 19 funds were long the stock at the end of both the first and second quarter.

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Office Depot CEO to Retire

Office Depot Inc (NASDAQ:ODP) is slightly lower today after the company announced that its CEO, Roland Smith, will step down by the end of the first quarter of 2017. Mr. Smith tried to sell Office Depot to Staples, Inc. (NASDAQ:SPLS) during his tenure, only to be blocked by the government over antitrust concerns. Now that the attempted merger, which temporarily put the company’s cost cutting and productivity initiatives on the backburner, is behind it, Office Depot Inc (NASDAQ:ODP) can now resume its focus on cutting costs and increasing returns on capital. 47 funds in our database were long Office Depot at the end of the second quarter, down from 58 that were long the stock at the end of the first quarter.

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On the next page we’ll examine the latest news on Zoetis, Valeant, and Mattel.

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