Nanometrics Incorporated (NANO): Hedge Funds Are Bullish and Insiders Are Bearish, What Should You Do?

Nanometrics Incorporated (NASDAQ:NANO) investors should be aware of an increase in support from the world’s most elite money managers of late.

Nanometrics Incorporated (NASDAQ:NANO)

In the financial world, there are many methods shareholders can use to track publicly traded companies. A couple of the most underrated are hedge fund and insider trading movement. At Insider Monkey, our studies have shown that, historically, those who follow the best picks of the best money managers can outperform the broader indices by a very impressive margin (see just how much).

Equally as integral, positive insider trading sentiment is a second way to break down the marketplace. As the old adage goes: there are a number of reasons for a bullish insider to drop shares of his or her company, but just one, very clear reason why they would initiate a purchase. Plenty of empirical studies have demonstrated the market-beating potential of this method if investors know what to do (learn more here).

Now, it’s important to take a look at the latest action encompassing Nanometrics Incorporated (NASDAQ:NANO).

How have hedgies been trading Nanometrics Incorporated (NASDAQ:NANO)?

Heading into 2013, a total of 7 of the hedge funds we track were long in this stock, a change of 17% from the previous quarter. With hedge funds’ sentiment swirling, there exists a few noteworthy hedge fund managers who were boosting their stakes considerably.

According to our comprehensive database, Chuck Royce’s Royce & Associates had the largest position in Nanometrics Incorporated (NASDAQ:NANO), worth close to $23.3 million, comprising 0.1% of its total 13F portfolio. Coming in second is Gotham Asset Management, managed by Joel Greenblatt, which held a $1.4 million position; the fund has 0.1% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Other hedge funds with similar optimism include Steve Shapiro’s Intrepid Capital Management Inc DE, Israel Englander’s Millennium Management and John Overdeck and David Siegel’s Two Sigma Advisors.

Now, key hedge funds have been driving this bullishness. Millennium Management, managed by Israel Englander, established the largest position in Nanometrics Incorporated (NASDAQ:NANO). Millennium Management had 0.6 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. John Overdeck and David Siegel’s Two Sigma Advisors also initiated a $0.4 million position during the quarter.

Insider trading activity in Nanometrics Incorporated (NASDAQ:NANO)

Insider purchases made by high-level executives is particularly usable when the company in question has experienced transactions within the past 180 days. Over the last half-year time period, Nanometrics Incorporated (NASDAQ:NANO) has experienced zero unique insiders purchasing, and 1 insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

Let’s also review hedge fund and insider activity in other stocks similar to Nanometrics Incorporated (NASDAQ:NANO). These stocks are ChipMOS Technologies (Bermuda) Ltd (NASDAQ:IMOS), Enphase Energy Inc (NASDAQ:ENPH), Ambarella Inc (NASDAQ:AMBA), LTX-Credence Corp (NASDAQ:LTXC), and Rda Microelectronics Inc (ADR) (NASDAQ:RDA). This group of stocks belong to the semiconductor equipment & materials industry and their market caps are similar to NANO’s market cap.