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Here is What Hedge Funds Think About Wingstop Inc (WING)

Insider Monkey finished processing more than 700 13F filings made by hedge funds and prominent investors. These filings show these funds’ portfolio positions as of September 30th. In this article we are going to take a look at smart money sentiment towards Wingstop Inc (NASDAQ:WING).

Is Wingstop Inc (NASDAQ:WING) a buy, sell, or hold? The best stock pickers are getting less bullish. The number of long hedge fund positions were cut by 1 lately. Our calculations also showed that WING isn’t among the 30 most popular stocks among hedge funds. WING was in 17 hedge funds’ portfolios at the end of September. There were 18 hedge funds in our database with WING positions at the end of the previous quarter.

In the financial world there are a large number of tools investors have at their disposal to grade stocks. A pair of the most under-the-radar tools are hedge fund and insider trading indicators. We have shown that, historically, those who follow the top picks of the best fund managers can outperform the broader indices by a solid amount. Insider Monkey’s flagship best performing hedge funds strategy returned 6.3% year to date (through December 3rd) and outperformed the market even though it draws its stock picks among small-cap stocks. This strategy also outperformed the market by 18 percentage points since its inception (see the details here). That’s why we believe hedge fund sentiment is a useful indicator that investors should pay attention to.

Dmitry Balyasny

Let’s review the latest hedge fund action regarding Wingstop Inc (NASDAQ:WING).

How are hedge funds trading Wingstop Inc (NASDAQ:WING)?

At the end of the third quarter, a total of 17 of the hedge funds tracked by Insider Monkey were long this stock, a change of -6% from one quarter earlier. Below, you can check out the change in hedge fund sentiment towards WING over the last 13 quarters. With hedge funds’ capital changing hands, there exists a few key hedge fund managers who were upping their holdings substantially (or already accumulated large positions).

WING_dec2018

The largest stake in Wingstop Inc (NASDAQ:WING) was held by Renaissance Technologies, which reported holding $38 million worth of stock at the end of September. It was followed by Balyasny Asset Management with a $19.2 million position. Other investors bullish on the company included Driehaus Capital, PDT Partners, and Shellback Capital.

Due to the fact that Wingstop Inc (NASDAQ:WING) has witnessed bearish sentiment from the entirety of the hedge funds we track, we can see that there exists a select few fund managers that elected to cut their positions entirely by the end of the third quarter. It’s worth mentioning that Peter Rathjens, Bruce Clarke and John Campbell’s Arrowstreet Capital dumped the biggest investment of the 700 funds watched by Insider Monkey, totaling close to $11.8 million in stock, and Ken Griffin’s Citadel Investment Group was right behind this move, as the fund sold off about $4 million worth. These moves are intriguing to say the least, as aggregate hedge fund interest fell by 1 funds by the end of the third quarter.

Let’s now review hedge fund activity in other stocks similar to Wingstop Inc (NASDAQ:WING). These stocks are Cubic Corporation (NYSE:CUB), Gold Fields Limited (NYSE:GFI), Lexington Realty Trust (NYSE:LXP), and Oil States International, Inc. (NYSE:OIS). All of these stocks’ market caps are similar to WING’s market cap.

Ticker No of HFs with positions Total Value of HF Positions (x1000) Change in HF Position
CUB 18 103213 5
GFI 10 61577 -2
LXP 13 49136 0
OIS 11 37638 2
Average 13 62891 1.25

View table here if you experience formatting issues.

As you can see these stocks had an average of 13 hedge funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $63 million. That figure was $94 million in WING’s case. Cubic Corporation (NYSE:CUB) is the most popular stock in this table. On the other hand Gold Fields Limited (NYSE:GFI) is the least popular one with only 10 bullish hedge fund positions. Wingstop Inc (NASDAQ:WING) is not the most popular stock in this group but hedge fund interest is still above average. This is a slightly positive signal but we’d rather spend our time researching stocks that hedge funds are piling on. In this regard CUB might be a better candidate to consider a long position.

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

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