Because Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) has experienced declining sentiment from the smart money, it’s easy to see that there exists a select few hedgies that decided to sell off their entire stakes in the third quarter. Interestingly, Ken Griffin’s Citadel Investment Group cut the largest investment of the 700 funds monitored by Insider Monkey, comprising about $29.3 million in call options. Daniel S. Och’s OZ Management was right behind this move, as the fund said goodbye to about $15.4 million worth. These transactions are interesting, as total hedge fund interest was cut by 3 funds in the third quarter.
Let’s also examine hedge fund activity in other stocks – not necessarily in the same industry as Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) but similarly valued. We will take a look at Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F), Kimberly Clark Corp (NYSE:KMB), The Southern Company (NYSE:SO), and American Tower Corp (NYSE:AMT). This group of stocks’ market caps match MS’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 32.25 hedge funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $1.4 billion. That figure was $3.63 billion in MS’s case. American Tower Corp (NYSE:AMT) is the most popular stock in this table. On the other hand The Southern Company (NYSE:SO) is the least popular one with only 20 bullish hedge fund positions. Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) 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 AMT might be a better candidate to consider a long position.