Markets are trading on pessimistic note despite upbeat jobs data. The jobless claims for the last week showed unexpected drop, close to a 43-year low. The decline shows the strength of labor market, which may pave way for an interest rate increase by the Fed later this year.
However, the markets are also affected by individual stocks showing significant moves. Among these stocks are Aurinia Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ:AUPH), Georgetown Bancorp Inc. (MD) (NASDAQ:GTWN), Neptune Technologies & Bioressources-Ord (NASDAQ:NEPT), Corbus Pharmaceuticals Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ:CRBP), and Big 5 Sporting Goods Corporation (NASDAQ:BGFV). Let’s take a closer look at these stocks and discuss the news behind their moves. In addition, we are going to assess the hedge fund sentiment towards the stocks in question.
An everyday investor doesn’t have the same resources and capabilities to analyze different publicly-traded companies as hedge funds do. This is why it is a good idea to see what stocks hedge funds like the most and try to imitate some of their bullish moves in an attempt to reap market-beating returns. At Insider Monkey, we follow the activity of several hundred of the best-performing hedge funds as part of our strategy. We analyze their 13F filings and use the data to see what stocks they are collectively bullish on. Through extensive research we have determined that the best approach to outperform the broader indices is to follow hedge funds into their top small-cap ideas. In our backtests, a portfolio of the 15 most popular small-cap stocks generated monthly alpha of 81 basis points, versus 0.7 percentage points posted by hedge funds’ top large- and mega-cap picks (see more details here).
Aurinia Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ:AUPH) stock has gained 34% following news of positive data from its Voclosporin drug trial in patients with active lupus nephritis (LN). The 24-week trial data from all 10 patients revealed that 70% patients achieved complete remission at 24 weeks, as measured by a urinary protein creatinine ratio. The company’s chief medical officer said that the results offer ‘further proof of concept data to support voclosporin’s use in the treatment of active LN.’ Among the funds we track, five funds held $9.64 million worth of Aurinia’s stock in aggregate at the end of June, having amassed 9.10% of its outstanding stock.
Georgetown Bancorp Inc. (MD) (NASDAQ:GTWN) stock is trading nearly 25% higher after the company announced that it will be acquired by Salem Five Bancorp. The all-cash transaction is valued at $49.2 million, which puts the company’s value at $26 per share, implying a premium of nearly 148% over the company’s tangible book value at June 30. The transaction was unanimously approved by both companies.
On the next page, we are going to discuss the news behind the activity of the other three stocks.