Although the masses and most of the financial media blame hedge funds for their exorbitant fee structure and disappointing performance, these investors have proved to have great stock picking abilities over the years (that’s why their assets under management continue to swell). We believe hedge fund sentiment should serve as a crucial tool of an individual investor’s stock selection process, as it may offer great insights of how the brightest minds of the finance industry feel about specific stocks. After all, these people have access to smartest analysts and expensive data/information sources that individual investors can’t match. So should one consider investing in Euronet Worldwide, Inc. (NASDAQ:EEFT)? The smart money sentiment can provide an answer to this question.
Euronet Worldwide, Inc. (NASDAQ:EEFT) shares haven’t seen a lot of action during the third quarter. Overall, hedge fund sentiment was unchanged. The stock was in 24 hedge funds’ portfolios at the end of September. At the end of this article we will also compare EEFT to other stocks including Synovus Financial Corp. (NYSE:SNV), Opko Health Inc. (NYSE:OPK), and ABIOMED, Inc. (NASDAQ:ABMD) to get a better sense of its popularity.
With all of this in mind, let’s view the fresh action surrounding Euronet Worldwide, Inc. (NASDAQ:EEFT).
Hedge fund activity in Euronet Worldwide, Inc. (NASDAQ:EEFT)
According to publicly available hedge fund and institutional investor holdings data compiled by Insider Monkey, Renaissance Technologies, managed by Jim Simons, holds the biggest position in Euronet Worldwide, Inc. (NASDAQ:EEFT). Renaissance Technologies has a $78.4 million position in the stock, comprising 0.2% of its 13F portfolio. The second most bullish fund manager is G2 Investment Partners Management, managed by Josh Goldberg, which holds a $18.8 million position; the fund has 7% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Some other members of the smart money with similar optimism encompass George McCabe’s Portolan Capital Management, Ken Griffin’s Citadel Investment Group and Seymour Sy Kaufman and Michael Stark’s Crosslink Capital.
Interestingly, Israel Englander’s Millennium Management dumped the biggest stake of all the hedgies monitored by Insider Monkey, valued at about $5 million in stock, and Clint Carlson’s Carlson Capital was right behind this move, as the fund dumped about $4.2 million worth.
Let’s now take a look at hedge fund activity in other stocks – not necessarily in the same industry as Euronet Worldwide, Inc. (NASDAQ:EEFT) but similarly valued. We will take a look at Synovus Financial Corp. (NYSE:SNV), Opko Health Inc. (NYSE:OPK), ABIOMED, Inc. (NASDAQ:ABMD), and Bright Horizons Family Solutions Inc (NYSE:BFAM). This group of stocks’ market valuations are closest to EEFT’s market valuation.
|Ticker||No of HFs with positions||Total Value of HF Positions (x1000)||Change in HF Position|
As you can see these stocks had an average of 20.5 hedge funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $292 million. That figure was $218 million in EEFT’s case. Opko Health Inc. (NYSE:OPK) is the most popular stock in this table. On the other hand Bright Horizons Family Solutions Inc (NYSE:BFAM) is the least popular one with only 15 bullish hedge fund positions. Euronet Worldwide, Inc. (NASDAQ:EEFT) 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 OPK might be a better candidate to consider a long position.