Bernard Horn‘s Polaris Capital Management LLC is a value investment management firm, which holds a well-diversified portfolio of global equity products. The firm offers its services to institutions, insurance companies endowments and to high net worth individual clients. As of September 30, 64% of its portfolio consists of international equity products while US equity account for 2%.
During the third quarter, Polaris returned 9.17%, outperforming the MSCI World Index, which gained 4.87%, according to its third-quarter letter to investors. Year-to-date, the fund’s returns amount to 6.33%, while since inception it has delivered an annualized return of 9.39%. In this article, we will discuss some of the stocks that Polaris discussed in the letter, including International Game Technology Ordinary Shares (NYSE:IGT), Carter’s Inc. (NYSE:CRI), J M Smucker Co (NYSE:SJM), Ameris Bancorp (NASDAQ:ABCB), and Popular Inc. (NASDAQ:BPOP).
The smart money sentiment is an important metric that can be used to assess the long-term profitability of a stock. While there are thousands of stocks trading daily on the market, taking a look at what hedge funds think about certain companies can narrow down the search significantly. At Insider Monkey, we track more than 745 hedge funds, whose 13F filings we analyze as part of our small-cap strategy. Our research has shown that imitating a portfolio that includes the 15 most popular small-cap stocks among hedge funds can outperform the market by as much as 95 basis points per month on average (see more details).
International Game Technology Ordinary Shares (NYSE:IGT)’s stock has surged by nearly 77% so far this year and sports a dividend yield of 2.80% At the end of June Polaris held 5.71 million shares worth $107.19 million. Among the funds in our database, 23 investors held $526 million worth of International Game Technology shares at the end of the second quarter. In its investor letter, Polaris Capital noted the strong second-quarter results posted by the company, as well as three consecutive quarters of growth, which coincided with the company paying down the up-frond costs for Italian Lotto concessions.
In Carter’s Inc. (NYSE:CRI), Polaris Capital held a $21.55-million position, which contained 202,451 shares at the end of June. The stock is down by 19% since the beginning of July and Polaris pointed out the stock’s underperformance due to a downward revision of sales and guidance affected by “weak wholesale and international business”. The company also cut its margins due to higher capital expenditures. Overall, 38 funds tracked by us held shares of Carter’s at the end of June, having amassed over 24% of its outstanding stock.
Since Carter’s is an apparel company, we suggest you take a look at our compilation of 10 most expensive cloth stores brands.