Here is What Hedge Funds Think About Xcel Brands Inc (XELB)

After several tireless days we have finished crunching the numbers from the more than 700 13F filings issued by the elite hedge funds and other investment firms that we track at Insider Monkey, which disclosed those firms’ equity portfolios as of September 30. The results of that effort will be put on display in this article, as we share valuable insight into the smart money sentiment towards Xcel Brands Inc (NASDAQ:XELB).

Xcel Brands Inc has experienced an increase in enthusiasm from smart money lately. XELB went public in the third quarter and was in 4 hedge funds’ portfolios at the end of September. At the end of this article we will also compare XELB to other stocks, including Emergent Capital Inc (NYSE:EMG), Gulf Island Fabrication, Inc. (NASDAQ:GIFI), and Fate Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:FATE) to get a better sense of its popularity.

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According to most market participants, hedge funds are perceived as worthless, old investment tools of yesteryear. While there are greater than 8000 funds with their doors open at present, Our researchers look at the masters of this group, approximately 700 funds. It is estimated that this group of investors direct most of the hedge fund industry’s total asset base, and by shadowing their inimitable stock picks, Insider Monkey has formulated a few investment strategies that have historically outpaced the market. Insider Monkey’s small-cap hedge fund strategy outperformed the S&P 500 index by 12 percentage points per year for a decade in their back tests.

With all of this in mind, we’re going to take a gander at the recent action surrounding Xcel Brands Inc (NASDAQ:XELB).

How are hedge funds trading Xcel Brands Inc (NASDAQ:XELB)?

According to Insider Monkey’s hedge fund database, Buckingham Capital Management, managed by David Keidan, holds the largest position in Xcel Brands Inc (NASDAQ:XELB). Buckingham Capital Management has a $10.1 million position in the stock, comprising 0.9% of its 13F portfolio. Coming in second is Buckingham Capital Management, led by David Keidan, holding a $3.4 million position; 0.3% of its 13F portfolio is allocated to the stock. Other peers with similar optimism encompass Richard Driehaus’ Driehaus Capital, Jeffrey Moskowitz’s Harvey Partners and Israel Englander’s Millennium Management.

Let’s check out hedge fund activity in other stocks similar to Xcel Brands Inc (NASDAQ:XELB). These stocks are Emergent Capital Inc (NYSE:EMG), Gulf Island Fabrication, Inc. (NASDAQ:GIFI), Fate Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:FATE), and Vishay Precision Group Inc (NYSE:VPG). This group of stocks’ market caps are similar to XELB’s market cap.

Ticker No of HFs with positions Total Value of HF Positions (x1000) Change in HF Position
EMG 7 66879 -2
GIFI 13 17575 4
FATE 9 38977 2
VPG 12 46714 1

As you can see these stocks had an average of 10 hedge funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $43 million. That figure was $17 million in XELB’s case. Gulf Island Fabrication, Inc. (NASDAQ:GIFI) is the most popular stock in this table. On the other hand Emergent Capital Inc (NYSE:EMG) is the least popular one with only 7 bullish hedge fund positions. Compared to these stocks Xcel Brands Inc (NASDAQ:XELB) is even less popular than EMG. Considering that hedge funds aren’t fond of this stock in relation to other companies mentioned in this article, it may be a good idea to analyze it in detail and understand why the smart money isn’t behind this stock. This isn’t necessarily bad news. Although it is possible that hedge funds may think the stock is overpriced and view the stock as a short candidate, they may not be very familiar with the bullish thesis. In either case more research is warranted.