Is StanCorp Financial Group, Inc. (SFG) Going to Burn These Hedge Funds?

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StanCorp Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE:SFG) has seen a decrease in hedge fund interest lately.

StanCorp Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE:SFG)According to most stock holders, hedge funds are assumed to be slow, outdated investment tools of years past. While there are over 8000 funds in operation today, we look at the moguls of this club, around 450 funds. It is widely believed that this group controls the lion’s share of all hedge funds’ total asset base, and by paying attention to their highest performing equity investments, we have unsheathed a few investment strategies that have historically outstripped the market. Our small-cap hedge fund strategy outperformed 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 outclassed the S&P 500 index by 24 percentage points in 7 months (explore the details and some picks here).

Equally as beneficial, optimistic insider trading sentiment is a second way to break down the marketplace. There are a variety of motivations for an insider to downsize shares of his or her company, but just one, very obvious reason why they would behave bullishly. Several academic studies have demonstrated the market-beating potential of this method if “monkeys” know where to look (learn more here).

With all of this in mind, it’s important to take a look at the recent action surrounding StanCorp Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE:SFG).

Hedge fund activity in StanCorp Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE:SFG)

In preparation for this year, a total of 7 of the hedge funds we track were long in this stock, a change of -30% from one quarter earlier. With hedgies’ positions undergoing their usual ebb and flow, there exists a few notable hedge fund managers who were boosting their holdings significantly.

Of the funds we track, Ken Griffin’s Citadel Investment Group had the biggest position in StanCorp Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE:SFG), worth close to $14.5 million, accounting for less than 0.1%% of its total 13F portfolio. Sitting at the No. 2 spot is Peter Rathjens, Bruce Clarke and John Campbell of Arrowstreet Capital, with a $3.5 million position; the fund has less than 0.1%% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Remaining peers that hold long positions include John Overdeck and David Siegel’s Two Sigma Advisors, Steven Cohen’s SAC Capital Advisors and D. E. Shaw’s D E Shaw.

Seeing as StanCorp Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE:SFG) has experienced bearish sentiment from the entirety of the hedge funds we track, it’s safe to say that there exists a select few money managers who sold off their positions entirely heading into 2013. Intriguingly, Anil Stevens and Glenn Shapiro’s Parameter Capital Management sold off the largest position of the “upper crust” of funds we track, valued at about $1.6 million in stock., and Jim Simons of Renaissance Technologies was right behind this move, as the fund dumped about $0.5 million worth. These transactions are important to note, as aggregate hedge fund interest was cut by 3 funds heading into 2013.

How have insiders been trading StanCorp Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE:SFG)?

Bullish insider trading is at its handiest when the primary stock in question has seen transactions within the past 180 days. Over the last 180-day time period, StanCorp Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE:SFG) has seen zero unique insiders buying, and 6 insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

Let’s also take a look at hedge fund and insider activity in other stocks similar to StanCorp Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE:SFG). These stocks are Unum Group (NYSE:UNM), Triple-S Management Corp.(NYSE:GTS), PICO Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:PICO), Assurant, Inc. (NYSE:AIZ), and CNO Financial Group Inc (NYSE:CNO). This group of stocks belong to the accident & health insurance industry and their market caps are similar to SFG’s market cap.

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