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Hedge Funds Have Never Been This Bullish On Qurate Retail, Inc. (QRTEA)

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. We at Insider Monkey have plowed through 823 13F filings that hedge funds and well-known value investors are required to file by the SEC. The 13F filings show the funds’ and investors’ portfolio positions as of June 30th, when the S&P 500 Index was trading around the 3100 level. Stocks kept going up since then. In this article we look at how hedge funds traded Qurate Retail, Inc. (NASDAQ:QRTEA) and determine whether the smart money was really smart about this stock.

Qurate Retail, Inc. (NASDAQ:QRTEA) was in 43 hedge funds’ portfolios at the end of the second quarter of 2020. The all time high for this statistics is 39. This means the bullish number of hedge fund positions in this stock currently sits at its all time high. QRTEA shareholders have witnessed an increase in hedge fund interest in recent months. There were 32 hedge funds in our database with QRTEA holdings at the end of March. Our calculations also showed that QRTEA isn’t among the 30 most popular stocks among hedge funds (click for Q2 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 the average investor there are several signals stock traders employ to analyze stocks. A pair of the most under-the-radar signals are hedge fund and insider trading moves. Our researchers have shown that, historically, those who follow the best picks of the top investment managers can trounce the broader indices by a solid amount (see the details here).

Fred DiSanto Ancora Advisors

Fred DiSanto of Ancora Advisors

At Insider Monkey we scour multiple sources to uncover the next great investment idea. For example, legal marijuana is one of the fastest growing industries right now, so we are checking out stock pitches like “the Starbucks of cannabis” to identify the next tenbagger. We go through lists like the 10 most profitable companies in the world to pick the best large-cap stocks to buy. Even though we recommend positions in only a tiny fraction of the companies we analyze, we check out as many stocks as we can. We read hedge fund investor letters and listen to stock pitches at hedge fund conferences. Hedge fund sentiment towards Tesla reached its all time high at the end of 2019 and Tesla shares more than tripled this year. We are trying to identify other EV revolution winners, so if you have any good ideas send us an email. Keeping this in mind we’re going to take a look at the key hedge fund action regarding Qurate Retail, Inc. (NASDAQ:QRTEA).

Hedge fund activity in Qurate Retail, Inc. (NASDAQ:QRTEA)

At Q2’s end, a total of 43 of the hedge funds tracked by Insider Monkey were bullish on this stock, a change of 34% from the first quarter of 2020. The graph below displays the number of hedge funds with bullish position in QRTEA over the last 20 quarters. With the smart money’s positions undergoing their usual ebb and flow, there exists a select group of noteworthy hedge fund managers who were boosting their stakes substantially (or already accumulated large positions).

Is QRTEA A Good Stock To Buy?

Of the funds tracked by Insider Monkey, Bob Peck and Andy Raab’s FPR Partners has the largest position in Qurate Retail, Inc. (NASDAQ:QRTEA), worth close to $165 million, amounting to 5.7% of its total 13F portfolio. Sitting at the No. 2 spot is Lyrical Asset Management, led by Andrew Wellington and Jeff Keswin, holding a $122.4 million position; 2.4% of its 13F portfolio is allocated to the stock. Some other professional money managers with similar optimism encompass Gavin M. Abrams’s Abrams Bison Investments, Cliff Asness’s AQR Capital Management and Thomas Bancroft’s Makaira Partners. In terms of the portfolio weights assigned to each position Makaira Partners allocated the biggest weight to Qurate Retail, Inc. (NASDAQ:QRTEA), around 14.84% of its 13F portfolio. Abrams Bison Investments is also relatively very bullish on the stock, designating 14.71 percent of its 13F equity portfolio to QRTEA.

With a general bullishness amongst the heavyweights, specific money managers have been driving this bullishness. Carlson Capital, managed by Clint Carlson, assembled the most outsized position in Qurate Retail, Inc. (NASDAQ:QRTEA). Carlson Capital had $25.9 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. Renaissance Technologies also made a $12.2 million investment in the stock during the quarter. The other funds with brand new QRTEA positions are Ken Grossman and Glen Schneider’s SG Capital Management, Robert Pitts’s Steadfast Capital Management, and Frederick DiSanto’s Ancora Advisors.

Let’s check out hedge fund activity in other stocks – not necessarily in the same industry as Qurate Retail, Inc. (NASDAQ:QRTEA) but similarly valued. We will take a look at BridgeBio Pharma, Inc. (NASDAQ:BBIO), Healthcare Realty Trust Inc (NYSE:HR), JBG SMITH Properties (NYSE:JBGS), Eldorado Resorts Inc (NASDAQ:ERI), Hawaiian Electric Industries, Inc. (NYSE:HE), Envestnet Inc (NYSE:ENV), and China Biologic Products Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:CBPO). This group of stocks’ market valuations are closest to QRTEA’s market valuation.

Ticker No of HFs with positions Total Value of HF Positions (x1000) Change in HF Position
BBIO 14 1341110 2
HR 22 155771 11
JBGS 25 283097 5
ERI 49 733973 10
HE 16 159237 3
ENV 19 85387 2
CBPO 23 774587 7
Average 24 504737 5.7

View table here if you experience formatting issues.

As you can see these stocks had an average of 24 hedge funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $505 million. That figure was $743 million in QRTEA’s case. Eldorado Resorts Inc (NASDAQ:ERI) is the most popular stock in this table. On the other hand BridgeBio Pharma, Inc. (NASDAQ:BBIO) is the least popular one with only 14 bullish hedge fund positions. Qurate Retail, Inc. (NASDAQ:QRTEA) is not the most popular stock in this group but hedge fund interest is still above average. Our overall hedge fund sentiment score for QRTEA is 81.4. Stocks with higher number of hedge fund positions relative to other stocks as well as relative to their historical range receive a higher sentiment score. 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 33% in 2020 through the end of August and still beat the market by 23.2 percentage points. Hedge funds were also right about betting on QRTEA as the stock returned 34.6% since Q2 and outperformed the market. Hedge funds were rewarded for their relative bullishness.

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