Here is What Hedge Funds Think About Kura Sushi USA, Inc. (KRUS)

We at Insider Monkey have gone over 821 13F filings that hedge funds and prominent investors are required to file by the SEC The 13F filings show the funds’ and investors’ portfolio positions as of March 31st, near the height of the coronavirus market crash. In this article, we look at what those funds think of Kura Sushi USA, Inc. (NASDAQ:KRUS) based on that data.

Kura Sushi USA, Inc. (NASDAQ:KRUS) has seen a decrease in enthusiasm from smart money of late. Our calculations also showed that KRUS 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.

Why do we pay any attention at all to hedge fund sentiment? Our research has shown that a select group of hedge fund holdings outperformed the S&P 500 ETFs by 58 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’ll significantly underperform the market. We have been tracking and sharing the list of these stocks since February 2017 and they lost 36% through May 18th. That’s why we believe hedge fund sentiment is an extremely useful indicator that investors should pay attention to.

Steve Leonard Pacifica Capital

Steve Leonard of Pacifica Capital

At Insider Monkey we leave no stone unturned when looking for the next great investment idea. For example, 2020’s unprecedented market conditions provide us with the highest number of trading opportunities in a decade. So we are checking out stocks recommended/scorned by legendary Bill Miller. We interview hedge fund managers and ask them about their best ideas. If you want to find out the best healthcare stock to buy right now, you can watch our latest hedge fund manager interview here. 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. Now we’re going to take a peek at the fresh hedge fund action surrounding Kura Sushi USA, Inc. (NASDAQ:KRUS).

How have hedgies been trading Kura Sushi USA, Inc. (NASDAQ:KRUS)?

At Q1’s end, a total of 5 of the hedge funds tracked by Insider Monkey were bullish on this stock, a change of -38% from the previous quarter. Below, you can check out the change in hedge fund sentiment towards KRUS over the last 18 quarters. So, let’s find out which hedge funds were among the top holders of the stock and which hedge funds were making big moves.

Is KRUS A Good Stock To Buy?

When looking at the institutional investors followed by Insider Monkey, Pacifica Capital Investments, managed by Steve Leonard, holds the number one position in Kura Sushi USA, Inc. (NASDAQ:KRUS). Pacifica Capital Investments has a $9.3 million position in the stock, comprising 5.1% of its 13F portfolio. The second largest stake is held by Daniel Lascano of Lomas Capital Management, with a $5 million position; the fund has 0.5% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Remaining professional money managers that are bullish contain Chuck Royce’s Royce & Associates, Steve Pei’s Gratia Capital and Noam Gottesman’s GLG Partners. In terms of the portfolio weights assigned to each position Pacifica Capital Investments allocated the biggest weight to Kura Sushi USA, Inc. (NASDAQ:KRUS), around 5.09% of its 13F portfolio. Gratia Capital is also relatively very bullish on the stock, designating 1.1 percent of its 13F equity portfolio to KRUS.

Seeing as Kura Sushi USA, Inc. (NASDAQ:KRUS) has experienced a decline in interest from the aggregate hedge fund industry, it’s safe to say that there was a specific group of funds who sold off their full holdings in the first quarter. Intriguingly, Mark Broach’s Manatuck Hill Partners sold off the biggest stake of the 750 funds monitored by Insider Monkey, valued at about $4.1 million in stock, and Gavin Saitowitz and Cisco J. del Valle’s Springbok Capital was right behind this move, as the fund sold off about $0.4 million worth. These bearish behaviors are interesting, as aggregate hedge fund interest dropped by 3 funds in the first quarter.

Let’s now take a look at hedge fund activity in other stocks – not necessarily in the same industry as Kura Sushi USA, Inc. (NASDAQ:KRUS) but similarly valued. These stocks are First United Corp (NASDAQ:FUNC), Ramaco Resources, Inc. (NASDAQ:METC), Harrow Health, Inc. (NASDAQ:HROW), and Millendo Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:MLND). This group of stocks’ market caps resemble KRUS’s market cap.

Ticker No of HFs with positions Total Value of HF Positions (x1000) Change in HF Position
FUNC 4 5848 -4
METC 7 2222 1
HROW 13 21342 -2
MLND 13 35175 2
Average 9.25 16147 -0.75

View table here if you experience formatting issues.

As you can see these stocks had an average of 9.25 hedge funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $16 million. That figure was $17 million in KRUS’s case. Harrow Health, Inc. (NASDAQ:HROW) is the most popular stock in this table. On the other hand First United Corp (NASDAQ:FUNC) is the least popular one with only 4 bullish hedge fund positions. Kura Sushi USA, Inc. (NASDAQ:KRUS) is not the least popular stock in this group but hedge fund interest is still below average. 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 8.3% in 2020 through the end of May and still beat the market by 13.2 percentage points. A small number of hedge funds were also right about betting on KRUS as the stock returned 22% during the second quarter and outperformed the market by an even larger margin.

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