Here is What Hedge Funds Think About Chico’s FAS, Inc. (NYSE:CHS)

Chico’s FAS, Inc. (NYSE:CHS) was in 23 hedge funds’ portfolio at the end of December. CHS has experienced a decrease in hedge fund interest of late. There were 24 hedge funds in our database with CHS positions at the end of the previous quarter.

Chico's FAS, Inc. (NYSE:CHS)

At the moment, there are tons of gauges investors can use to monitor stocks. A pair of the most useful are hedge fund and insider trading sentiment. At Insider Monkey, our studies have shown that, historically, those who follow the best picks of the elite money managers can beat the broader indices by a significant margin (see just how much).

Just as important, positive insider trading activity is a second way to break down the world of equities. As the old adage goes: there are a number of motivations for a bullish insider to get rid of shares of his or her company, but just one, very obvious reason why they would buy. Plenty of academic studies have demonstrated the market-beating potential of this method if piggybackers know what to do (learn more here).

With all of this in mind, let’s take a gander at the key action regarding Chico’s FAS, Inc. (NYSE:CHS).

What have hedge funds been doing with Chico’s FAS, Inc. (NYSE:CHS)?

At the end of the fourth quarter, a total of 23 of the hedge funds we track were long in this stock, a change of -4% from the third quarter. With the smart money’s sentiment swirling, there exists a select group of key hedge fund managers who were upping their holdings meaningfully.

According to our comprehensive database, Donald Chiboucis’s Columbus Circle Investors had the biggest position in Chico’s FAS, Inc. (NYSE:CHS), worth close to $96 million, accounting for 0.8% of its total 13F portfolio. Coming in second is Blue Harbour Group, managed by Clifton S. Robbins, which held a $79 million position; the fund has 8.9% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Other hedge funds that are bullish include Jim Simons’s Renaissance Technologies, Ken Griffin’s Citadel Investment Group and Cliff Asness’s AQR Capital Management.

Since Chico’s FAS, Inc. (NYSE:CHS) has experienced bearish sentiment from the smart money, it’s safe to say that there lies a certain “tier” of money managers who were dropping their entire stakes heading into 2013. It’s worth mentioning that Paul Tudor Jones’s Tudor Investment Corp sold off the biggest investment of all the hedgies we monitor, worth about $9 million in stock. Andrew Sandler’s fund, Sandler Capital Management, also dumped its stock, about $7 million worth. These moves are interesting, as aggregate hedge fund interest dropped by 1 funds heading into 2013.

Insider trading activity in Chico’s FAS, Inc. (NYSE:CHS)

Insider trading activity, especially when it’s bullish, is particularly usable when the company in focus has seen transactions within the past six months. Over the last 180-day time frame, Chico’s FAS, Inc. (NYSE:CHS) has experienced zero unique insiders buying, and 7 insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

With the returns demonstrated by our time-tested strategies, retail investors must always monitor hedge fund and insider trading activity, and Chico’s FAS, Inc. (NYSE:CHS) is an important part of this process.

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