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Hedge Fund Blue Harbour’s Top Stock Picks Include Jack in the Box Inc. (JACK)

Robbins and his team disclosed ownership of 4.3 million shares of women’s apparel and accessories retailer Chico’s FAS, Inc. (NYSE:CHS). The company’s fiscal year ended in early February, with the fourth quarter of the year showing double-digit growth rates in both revenue and earnings versus a year earlier. The trailing P/E is 18, so while Chico’s FAS, Inc. (NYSE:CHS)’s is not a pure value stock it may offer “growth at a reasonable price.” Renaissance Technologies, founded by billionaire Jim Simons, cut its stake in Chico’s FAS, Inc. (NYSE:CHS)’s by 20% during Q4 2012 but still owned 3.8 million shares as of the end of December (find Renaissance’s favorite stocks).

Blue Harbour had 3.6 million shares of Progressive Waste Solutions Ltd (USA) (NYSE:BIN) in its portfolio per the 13F. The waste management company is an interesting potential defensive pick: its beta is 0.5 (and that makes sense, given the industry’s stability) and the dividend yield is 2.4% at current prices. Financial performance has also been strong, although investors may have already caught onto the opportunity at Progressive Waste Solutions Ltd (USA) (NYSE:BIN) seeing as its trailing and forward earnings multiples are 27 and 20 respectively.

Both Progressive and Jack in the Box Inc. (NASDAQ:JACK) seem a bit pricy for our attention at this time. Chico’s is trading a bit more cheaply, and with the retailer showing good results recently we’d be interested in taking a closer look at the company. As for the IT companies leading the list of Robbins’s picks, we think it might be best to wait a bit- due to sequestration in the case of CACI, and due to the implied high earnings growth that analysts are expecting at iGate.

Disclosure: I own no shares of any stocks mentioned in this article.

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