The elite funds run by legendary investors such as Dan Loeb and David Tepper make hundreds of millions of dollars for themselves and their investors by spending enormous resources doing research on small cap stocks that big investment banks don’t follow. Because of their pay structures, they have strong incentive to do the research necessary to beat the market. That’s why we pay close attention to what they think in small cap stocks. In this article, we take a closer look at Las Vegas Sands Corp. (NYSE:LVS) from the perspective of those elite funds.
Las Vegas Sands Corp. (NYSE:LVS) shareholders have witnessed an increase in enthusiasm from smart money in recent months. LVS was in 23 hedge funds’ portfolios at the end of September. There were 31 hedge funds in our database with LVS holdings at the end of the previous quarter.At the end of this article we will also compare LVS to other stocks including Anthem Inc (NYSE:ANTM), American Electric Power Company, Inc. (NYSE:AEP), and Carnival Corporation (NYSE:CCL) to get a better sense of its popularity.
At Insider Monkey, we’ve developed an investment strategy that has delivered market-beating returns over the past 12 months. Our strategy identifies the 100 best-performing funds of the previous quarter from among the collection of 700+ successful funds that we track in our database, which we accomplish using our returns methodology. We then study the portfolios of those 100 funds using the latest 13F data to uncover the 30 most popular mid-cap stocks (market caps of between $1 billion and $10 billion) among them to hold until the next filing period. This strategy delivered 18% gains over the past 12 months, more than doubling the 8% returns enjoyed by the S&P 500 ETFs.
What does the smart money think about Las Vegas Sands Corp. (NYSE:LVS)?
At the end of the third quarter, a total of 31 of the hedge funds tracked by Insider Monkey were bullish on this stock, a rise of 35% from one quarter earlier. With hedge funds’ sentiment swirling, there exists an “upper tier” of noteworthy hedge fund managers who were upping their holdings considerably (or already accumulated large positions).
Of the funds tracked by Insider Monkey, Iridian Asset Management, managed by David Cohen and Harold Levy, holds the biggest position in Las Vegas Sands Corp. (NYSE:LVS). Iridian Asset Management has a $222.3 million position in the stock, comprising 1.9% of its 13F portfolio. On Iridian Asset Management’s heels is Balyasny Asset Management, led by Dmitry Balyasny, holding a $97.8 million position. Remaining peers that hold long positions consist of Cliff Asness’ AQR Capital Management, Mario Gabelli’s GAMCO Investors and Ken Griffin’s Citadel Investment Group.
With a general bullishness amongst the heavyweights, key hedge funds have been driving this bullishness. Iridian Asset Management assembled the biggest position in Las Vegas Sands Corp. (NYSE:LVS). The other funds with new positions in the stock are Ken Griffin’s Citadel Investment Group, Steve Cohen’s Point72 Asset Management, and Peter Rathjens, Bruce Clarke and John Campbell’s Arrowstreet Capital.
Let’s go over hedge fund activity in other stocks – not necessarily in the same industry as Las Vegas Sands Corp. (NYSE:LVS) but similarly valued. These stocks are Anthem Inc (NYSE:ANTM), American Electric Power Company, Inc. (NYSE:AEP), Carnival Corporation (NYSE:CCL), and Crown Castle International Corp. (NYSE:CCI). This group of stocks’ market caps resemble LVS’s market cap.
|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 39 hedge funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $1.65 billion. That figure was $660 million in LVS’s case. Anthem Inc (NYSE:ANTM) is the most popular stock in this table. On the other hand Carnival Corporation (NYSE:CCL) is the least popular one with only 27 bullish hedge fund positions. Las Vegas Sands Corp. (NYSE:LVS) 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 ANTM might be a better candidate to consider a long position in.