Hedge Funds Aren’t Crazy About Western Refining, Inc. (WNR) Anymore – PBF Energy Inc (PBF), Northern Tier Energy LP (NTI)

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Western Refining, Inc. (NYSE:WNR) was in 19 hedge funds’ portfolio at the end of the fourth quarter of 2012. WNR has seen a decrease in hedge fund interest in recent months. There were 19 hedge funds in our database with WNR positions at the end of the previous quarter.

Western Refining, Inc. (NYSE:WNR)

In the 21st century investor’s toolkit, there are plenty of gauges shareholders can use to analyze their holdings. A couple of the most innovative are hedge fund and insider trading interest. At Insider Monkey, our research analyses have shown that, historically, those who follow the top picks of the elite fund managers can outpace their index-focused peers by a very impressive amount (see just how much).

Just as key, bullish insider trading activity is another way to break down the investments you’re interested in. There are plenty of stimuli for an upper level exec to drop shares of his or her company, but just one, very obvious reason why they would behave bullishly. Various academic studies have demonstrated the valuable potential of this strategy if you understand where to look (learn more here).

Consequently, let’s take a gander at the key action surrounding Western Refining, Inc. (NYSE:WNR).

What have hedge funds been doing with Western Refining, Inc. (NYSE:WNR)?

At the end of the fourth quarter, a total of 19 of the hedge funds we track were long in this stock, a change of 0% from the third quarter. With hedge funds’ sentiment swirling, there exists a select group of noteworthy hedge fund managers who were boosting their holdings substantially.

When looking at the hedgies we track, Renaissance Technologies, managed by Jim Simons, holds the biggest position in Western Refining, Inc. (NYSE:WNR). Renaissance Technologies has a $94.2 million position in the stock, comprising 0.3% of its 13F portfolio. On Renaissance Technologies’s heels is D E Shaw, managed by D. E. Shaw, which held a $16.2 million position; less than 0.1%% of its 13F portfolio is allocated to the company. Some other peers that are bullish include Jeffrey Vinik’s Vinik Asset Management, Wayne Cooperman’s Cobalt Capital Management and Israel Englander’s Millennium Management.

Judging by the fact that Western Refining, Inc. (NYSE:WNR) has witnessed bearish sentiment from the entirety of the hedge funds we track, logic holds that there is a sect of money managers that decided to sell off their entire stakes in Q4. Intriguingly, Peter Rathjens, Bruce Clarke and John Campbell’s Arrowstreet Capital dumped the largest stake of the “upper crust” of funds we watch, valued at close to $6.9 million in stock., and John Burbank of Passport Capital was right behind this move, as the fund sold off about $3.9 million worth. These bearish behaviors are intriguing to say the least, as aggregate hedge fund interest stayed the same (this is a bearish signal in our experience).

How are insiders trading Western Refining, Inc. (NYSE:WNR)?

Insider trading activity, especially when it’s bullish, is at its handiest when the primary stock in question has experienced transactions within the past six months. Over the latest half-year time frame, Western Refining, Inc. (NYSE:WNR) has seen 1 unique insiders buying, and 7 insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

Let’s check out hedge fund and insider activity in other stocks similar to Western Refining, Inc. (NYSE:WNR). These stocks are InterOil Corporation (USA) (NYSE:IOC), PBF Energy Inc (NYSE:PBF), Northern Tier Energy LP (NYSE:NTI), World Fuel Services Corporation (NYSE:INT), and Sinopec Shanghai Petrochemical Co. (ADR) (NYSE:SHI). This group of stocks are in the oil & gas refining & marketing industry and their market caps resemble WNR’s market cap.

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