Hedge Funds Have Never Been This Bullish On Intercontinental Exchange (ICE)

The latest 13F reporting period has come and gone, and Insider Monkey is again at the forefront when it comes to making use of this gold mine of data. Insider Monkey finished processing 821 13F filings submitted by hedge funds and prominent investors. These filings show these funds’ portfolio positions as of March 31st, 2020. In this article we are going to take a look at smart money sentiment towards Intercontinental Exchange Inc (NYSE:ICE).

Intercontinental Exchange Inc (NYSE:ICE) investors should be aware of an increase in hedge fund interest lately. Our calculations also showed that ICE isn’t among the 30 most popular stocks among hedge funds (click for Q1 rankings and see the video for a quick look at the top 5 stocks).

Video: Watch our video about the top 5 most popular hedge fund stocks.

To most investors, hedge funds are perceived as worthless, old financial tools of years past. While there are greater than 8000 funds with their doors open at the moment, Our researchers hone in on the bigwigs of this group, about 850 funds. These hedge fund managers administer the majority of the smart money’s total asset base, and by tailing their inimitable equity investments, Insider Monkey has uncovered a few investment strategies that have historically beaten the broader indices. Insider Monkey’s flagship short hedge fund strategy outrun the S&P 500 short ETFs by around 20 percentage points per year since its inception in March 2017. Our portfolio of short stocks lost 36% since February 2017 (through May 18th) even though the market was up 30% during the same period. We just shared a list of 8 short targets in our latest quarterly update .

Harold Levy Iridian Asset Management

Harold Levy of Iridian Asset Management

At Insider Monkey we leave no stone unturned when looking for the next great investment idea. For example, Europe is set to become the world’s largest cannabis market, so we checked out this European marijuana stock pitch. Also, we are still not out of the woods in terms of the coronavirus pandemic. So, we checked out this analyst’s “corona catalyst plays“.  We read hedge fund investor letters and listen to stock pitches at hedge fund conferences. Our best call in 2020 was shorting the market when the S&P 500 was trading at 3150 after realizing the coronavirus pandemic’s significance before most investors. Keeping this in mind let’s take a look at the latest hedge fund action regarding Intercontinental Exchange Inc (NYSE:ICE).

How have hedgies been trading Intercontinental Exchange Inc (NYSE:ICE)?

At the end of the first quarter, a total of 61 of the hedge funds tracked by Insider Monkey were bullish on this stock, a change of 17% from the fourth quarter of 2019. On the other hand, there were a total of 35 hedge funds with a bullish position in ICE a year ago. So, let’s examine which hedge funds were among the top holders of the stock and which hedge funds were making big moves.

The largest stake in Intercontinental Exchange Inc (NYSE:ICE) was held by D E Shaw, which reported holding $368.9 million worth of stock at the end of September. It was followed by Cantillon Capital Management with a $357.8 million position. Other investors bullish on the company included Alkeon Capital Management, Iridian Asset Management, and GLG Partners. In terms of the portfolio weights assigned to each position Truvvo Partners allocated the biggest weight to Intercontinental Exchange Inc (NYSE:ICE), around 27.65% of its 13F portfolio. Permian Investment Partners is also relatively very bullish on the stock, setting aside 21.66 percent of its 13F equity portfolio to ICE.

With a general bullishness amongst the heavyweights, key hedge funds have jumped into Intercontinental Exchange Inc (NYSE:ICE) headfirst. Junto Capital Management, managed by James Parsons, created the biggest position in Intercontinental Exchange Inc (NYSE:ICE). Junto Capital Management had $91.3 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. Alex Duran and Scott Hendrickson’s Permian Investment Partners also initiated a $90.8 million position during the quarter. The other funds with new positions in the stock are Steve Cohen’s Point72 Asset Management, Dmitry Balyasny’s Balyasny Asset Management, and Will Cook’s Sunriver Management.

Let’s check out hedge fund activity in other stocks – not necessarily in the same industry as Intercontinental Exchange Inc (NYSE:ICE) but similarly valued. We will take a look at CSX Corporation (NASDAQ:CSX), Air Products & Chemicals, Inc. (NYSE:APD), Shopify Inc (NYSE:SHOP), and Kimberly Clark Corporation (NYSE:KMB). This group of stocks’ market caps resemble ICE’s market cap.

Ticker No of HFs with positions Total Value of HF Positions (x1000) Change in HF Position
CSX 57 2811477 11
APD 41 352215 -13
SHOP 43 2892013 13
KMB 46 1173309 9
Average 46.75 1807254 5

View table here if you experience formatting issues.

As you can see these stocks had an average of 46.75 hedge funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $1807 million. That figure was $2491 million in ICE’s case. CSX Corporation (NASDAQ:CSX) is the most popular stock in this table. On the other hand Air Products & Chemicals, Inc. (NYSE:APD) is the least popular one with only 41 bullish hedge fund positions. Compared to these stocks Intercontinental Exchange Inc (NYSE:ICE) is more popular among hedge funds. Our calculations showed that top 10 most popular stocks among hedge funds returned 41.4% in 2019 and outperformed the S&P 500 ETF (SPY) by 10.1 percentage points. These stocks gained 7.9% in 2020 through May 22nd but still managed to beat the market by 15.6 percentage points. Hedge funds were also right about betting on ICE, though not to the same extent, as the stock returned 16.1% in Q2 (through May 22nd) and outperformed the market as well.

Disclosure: None. This article was originally published at Insider Monkey.