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Is Axcelis Technologies Inc (ACLS) Going to Burn These Hedge Funds?

Is it smart to be bullish on Axcelis Technologies Inc (NASDAQ:ACLS)?

If you were to ask many of your peers, hedge funds are perceived as overrated, outdated financial tools of a period lost to current times. Although there are more than 8,000 hedge funds trading in present day, this site focuses on the upper echelon of this club, around 525 funds. Analysts calculate that this group has its hands on the majority of the smart money’s total capital, and by keeping an eye on their highest performing picks, we’ve unearthed a few investment strategies that have historically beaten the S&P 500. Our small-cap hedge fund strategy beat the S&P 500 index by 18 percentage points a year for a decade in our back tests, and since we’ve began to sharing our picks with our subscribers at the end of August 2012, we have beaten the S&P 500 index by 33 percentage points in 11 months (explore the details and some picks here).

Just as necessary, positive insider trading activity is another way to analyze the stock market universe. As the old adage goes: there are a variety of motivations for an executive to get rid of shares of his or her company, but just one, very obvious reason why they would buy. Several empirical studies have demonstrated the useful potential of this tactic if you know what to do (learn more here).

Axcelis Technologies Inc (NASDAQ:ACLS)

Furthermore, let’s analyze the latest info for Axcelis Technologies Inc (NASDAQ:ACLS).

What does the smart money think about Axcelis Technologies Inc (NASDAQ:ACLS)?

At the end of the second quarter, a total of 11 of the hedge funds we track were long in this stock, a change of 22% from one quarter earlier. With hedgies’ positions undergoing their usual ebb and flow, there exists a few notable hedge fund managers who were upping their holdings considerably.

Out of the hedge funds we follow, Diker Management, managed by Mark N. Diker, holds the most valuable position in Axcelis Technologies Inc (NASDAQ:ACLS). Diker Management has a $8.6 million position in the stock, comprising 2.7% of its 13F portfolio. The second largest stake is held by Chuck Royce of Royce & Associates, with a $2.9 million position; less than 0.1%% of its 13F portfolio is allocated to the stock. Other hedgies with similar optimism include David Cohen and Harold Levy’s Iridian Asset Management, David Moradi’s Anthion Management and Israel Englander’s Millennium Management.

As industrywide interest increased, certain bigger names were leading the bulls’ herd. Diker Management, managed by Mark N. Diker, initiated the most valuable position in Axcelis Technologies Inc (NASDAQ:ACLS). Diker Management had 8.6 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. Chuck Royce’s Royce & Associates also made a $2.9 million investment in the stock during the quarter. The other funds with new positions in the stock are David Cohen and Harold Levy’s Iridian Asset Management, David Moradi’s Anthion Management, and Israel Englander’s Millennium Management.

How have insiders been trading Axcelis Technologies Inc (NASDAQ:ACLS)?

Legal insider trading, particularly when it’s bullish, is best served when the company we’re looking at has experienced transactions within the past six months. Over the latest half-year time frame, Axcelis Technologies Inc (NASDAQ:ACLS) has seen zero unique insiders purchasing, and zero insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

We’ll also take a look at the relationship between both of these indicators in other stocks similar to Axcelis Technologies Inc (NASDAQ:ACLS). These stocks are Mattson Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ:MTSN), eMagin Corporation (NYSEAMEX:EMAN), Cascade Microtech, Inc. (NASDAQ:CSCD), Oclaro, Inc. (NASDAQ:OCLR), and Mindspeed Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:MSPD). This group of stocks belong to the semiconductor equipment & materials industry and their market caps resemble ACLS’s market cap.