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Is American National Insurance Company (ANAT) A Good Stock To Buy?

As one would reasonably expect, some big names have been driving this bullishness. AQR Capital Management, managed by Cliff Asness, established the most valuable position in American National Insurance Company (NASDAQ:ANAT). According to its latest 13F filing, the fund had $2 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. Peter Muller’s PDT Partners also made a $0.6 million investment in the stock during the quarter. The following funds were also among the new ANAT investors: Bruce Silver’s Silver Capital Management LLC and Gavin Saitowitz and Cisco J. del Valle’s Springbok Capital.

Let’s now review hedge fund activity in other stocks similar to American National Insurance Company (NASDAQ:ANAT). We will take a look at Blackbaud, Inc. (NASDAQ:BLKB), ProAssurance Corporation (NYSE:PRA), Valero Energy Partners LP (NYSE:VLP), and Aaron’s, Inc. (NYSE:AAN). This group of stocks’ market values are closest to ANAT’s market value.

Ticker No of HFs with positions Total Value of HF Positions (x1000) Change in HF Position
BLKB 15 136813 4
PRA 14 126443 0
VLP 5 4475 0
AAN 32 375110 3

As you can see these stocks had an average of 17 hedge funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $161 million. ANAT has only managed to attract $44 million in investments from hedge funds. Aaron’s, Inc. (NYSE:AAN) is the most popular stock in this table, while Valero Energy Partners LP (NYSE:VLP) lags behind with only 5 bullish hedge fund positions. American National Insurance Company (NASDAQ:ANAT) 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. In this regard AAN might be a better candidate to consider a long position.

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