In this article we will take a look at whether hedge funds think Hingham Institution for Savings (NASDAQ:HIFS) is a good investment right now. We check hedge fund and billionaire investor sentiment before delving into hours of research. Hedge funds spend millions of dollars on Ivy League graduates, unconventional data sources, expert networks, and get tips from investment bankers and industry insiders. Sure they sometimes fail miserably, but their consensus stock picks historically outperformed the market after adjusting for known risk factors.
Hedge fund interest in Hingham Institution for Savings (NASDAQ:HIFS) shares was flat at the end of last quarter. This is usually a negative indicator. The level and the change in hedge fund popularity aren’t the only variables you need to analyze to decipher hedge funds’ perspectives. A stock may witness a boost in popularity but it may still be less popular than similarly priced stocks. That’s why at the end of this article we will examine companies such as Tristate Capital Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:TSC), Value Line, Inc. (NASDAQ:VALU), and Crestwood Equity Partners LP (NYSE:CEQP) to gather more data points. Our calculations also showed that HIFS 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.
So, why do we pay attention to hedge fund sentiment before making any investment decisions? Our research has shown that hedge funds’ small-cap stock picks managed to beat the market by double digits annually between 1999 and 2016, but the margin of outperformance has been declining in recent years. Nevertheless, we were still able to identify in advance a select group of hedge fund holdings that outperformed the S&P 500 ETFs by more than 44 percentage points since March 2017 (see the details here). We were also able to identify in advance a select group of hedge fund holdings that underperformed the market by 10 percentage points annually between 2006 and 2017. Interestingly the margin of underperformance of these stocks has been increasing in recent years. Investors who are long the market and short these stocks would have returned more than 27% annually between 2015 and 2017. We have been tracking and sharing the list of these stocks since February 2017 in our quarterly newsletter. Even if you aren’t comfortable with shorting stocks, you should at least avoid initiating long positions in stocks that are in our short portfolio.
At Insider Monkey we leave no stone unturned when looking for the next great investment idea. For example, legendary investor Bill Miller told investors to sell 7 extremely popular recession stocks last month. So, we went through his list and recommended another stock with 100% upside potential instead. We interview hedge fund managers and ask them about their best ideas. You can watch our latest hedge fund manager interview here and find out the name of the large-cap healthcare stock that Sio Capital’s Michael Castor expects to double. 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 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 key hedge fund action encompassing Hingham Institution for Savings (NASDAQ:HIFS).
How have hedgies been trading Hingham Institution for Savings (NASDAQ:HIFS)?
Heading into the second quarter of 2020, a total of 3 of the hedge funds tracked by Insider Monkey were long this stock, a change of 0% from the fourth quarter of 2019. On the other hand, there were a total of 1 hedge funds with a bullish position in HIFS a year ago. With the smart money’s capital changing hands, there exists a select group of notable hedge fund managers who were upping their stakes significantly (or already accumulated large positions).
More specifically, Renaissance Technologies was the largest shareholder of Hingham Institution for Savings (NASDAQ:HIFS), with a stake worth $3.7 million reported as of the end of September. Trailing Renaissance Technologies was Citadel Investment Group, which amassed a stake valued at $0.4 million. Millennium Management was also very fond of the stock, becoming one of the largest hedge fund holders of the company. In terms of the portfolio weights assigned to each position Renaissance Technologies allocated the biggest weight to Hingham Institution for Savings (NASDAQ:HIFS), around 0.0036% of its 13F portfolio. Millennium Management is also relatively very bullish on the stock, designating 0.0005 percent of its 13F equity portfolio to HIFS.
We view hedge fund activity in the stock unfavorable, but in this case there was only a single hedge fund selling its entire position: Driehaus Capital. One hedge fund selling its entire position doesn’t always imply a bearish intent. Theoretically a hedge fund may decide to sell a promising position in order to invest the proceeds in a more promising idea. However, we don’t think this is the case in this case because only one of the 800+ hedge funds tracked by Insider Monkey identified as a viable investment and initiated a position in the stock (that fund was Millennium Management).
Let’s go over hedge fund activity in other stocks – not necessarily in the same industry as Hingham Institution for Savings (NASDAQ:HIFS) but similarly valued. These stocks are Tristate Capital Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:TSC), Value Line, Inc. (NASDAQ:VALU), Crestwood Equity Partners LP (NYSE:CEQP), and XBiotech Inc. (NASDAQ:XBIT). All of these stocks’ market caps resemble HIFS’s market cap.
|Ticker||No of HFs with positions||Total Value of HF Positions (x1000)||Change in HF Position|
View table here if you experience formatting issues.
As you can see these stocks had an average of 7.5 hedge funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $8 million. That figure was $4 million in HIFS’s case. Tristate Capital Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:TSC) is the most popular stock in this table. On the other hand Value Line, Inc. (NASDAQ:VALU) is the least popular one with only 2 bullish hedge fund positions. Hingham Institution for Savings (NASDAQ:HIFS) is not the least popular stock in this group but hedge fund interest is still below average. This is a slightly negative signal and we’d rather spend our time researching stocks that hedge funds are piling on. 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 and surpassed the market by 15.6 percentage points. Unfortunately HIFS wasn’t nearly as popular as these 10 stocks (hedge fund sentiment was quite bearish); HIFS investors were disappointed as the stock returned 3.9% during the second quarter and underperformed the market. If you are interested in investing in large cap stocks with huge upside potential, you should check out the top 10 most popular stocks among hedge funds as most of these stocks already outperformed the market in 2020.
Disclosure: None. This article was originally published at Insider Monkey.