Monday Headlines Being Dominated by Facebook, Pfizer, Symantec, More

With the markets on edge over a potential Brexit and the FOMC meeting scheduled for this week, the coming days may be more volatile than expected. Among the stocks buzzing today are Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), China Life Insurance Company Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:LFC), Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC), Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE), and BioScrip Inc (NASDAQ:BIOS). Let’s take a closer look at why and see how the hedge funds in our database have been trading these equities of late.

At Insider Monkey, we track around 765 hedge funds and institutional investors. Through extensive backtests, we have determined that imitating some of the stocks that these investors are collectively bullish on, can help retail investors generate double digits of alpha per year. The key is to focus on the small-cap picks of these funds, which are usually less followed by the broader market and allow for larger price inefficiencies (see the details here).

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Facebook Turns on Safety Check

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) activated its safety check feature for the first time after 50 people were killed at a gay nightclub in Orlando this weekend. The feature allows people on Facebook to alert friends and family that they are safe in times of crisis. The feature is expected to prove useful for future events such as earthquakes or tornadoes. Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB)’s safety check illustrates how the company is innovating and leading the way in the social media sector. Of the 766 elite funds that we track, 164 were long Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) on March 31, owning $14.54 billion worth of its shares. Those shares are off by 1.2% in morning trading.

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China Life Insurance Plays Both Sides

China Life Insurance Company Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:LFC) is in the spotlight after the insurance company agreed to invest $600 million into Didi Chuxing, making the insurer one of the key investors in the Chinese ride sharing app’s current round of fundraising, which is expected to amount to over $3.5 billion and value the company at more than $25 billion. China Life’s investment is noteworthy because the insurer had previously invested in Uber China. Didi is currently the undisputed ride-sharing leader in China, while Uber is the undisputed leader elsewhere. Jim Simons‘ Renaissance Technologies owned around 420,000 shares of China Life Insurance Company Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:LFC) at the end of March.

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On the next page we examine the latest regarding Symantec Corporation, Pfizer, and BioScrip.

M&A at Symantec 

Software security company Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC) is 1% higher in morning trading after announcing that it will acquire fellow security firm Blue Coat for $4.65 billion in cash. Blue Coat is a leader in web security, with a portfolio of integrated technologies serving more than 15,000 customers worldwide. It did around $755 million in revenue during the 12 months ended April 30 and was set to price its IPO before Symantec’s purchase. As part of the deal, current Blue Coat CEO Greg Clark will step up to the CEO seat at Symantec once the transaction closes, likely in the third quarter of this year. Symantec expects to realize $150 million in annual cost synergies and anticipates its EPS for fiscal year 2018 to be $1.70-to-$1.80 versus the consensus estimate of $1.39. Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC) was in 33 hedge funds’ portfolios at the end of the first quarter among those that we monitor.

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Pfizer’s Inotuzumab Ozogamicin Makes Progress

Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) is trending after a Phase 3 clinical trial showed that the company’s investigational drug inotuzumab ozogamicin demonstrated superiority versus chemotherapy in adult patients with refractory/relapsed CD22-positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Given that the survival rates for that particular type of leukemia are low, there will likely be great demand for the drug should the FDA approve it. Despite the news, shares of Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) are off by 0.45%, mainly due to broader market weakness. Ken Fisher‘s Fisher Asset Management was a top shareholder of Pfizer at the end of March.

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BioScrip Hops on the M&A Bandwagon

BioScrip Inc (NASDAQ:BIOS) is 16% in the red this morning after acquiring HS Infusion Holdings for $80 million in cash and $5 million in stock. The acquisition also includes a contingent consideration of 3.1 million and 2.475 million restricted stock units which will vest when BioScrip’s 20-day average trading price exceeds $4.00 and $5.00 a share respectively, subject to certain time restrictions and circumstances. HS Infusion, which did $109 million in sales in 2015, is a provider of home nursing and home infusion products and services to patients suffering from both chronic and acute medical conditions. Bioscrip’s management expects to realize $14 million-to-$17 million in synergies within 12-to-18 months after the deal closing. BioScrip has also announced a public offering of common stock to finance the deal. BioScrip Inc (NASDAQ:BIOS) was in the portfolios of 13 funds in our database as of the most recent 13F reporting period.

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