Traders are keeping a close eye on crude after the API reported a 2.7 million-barrel increase in U.S. inventories last week. That number was larger than expected and could hurt broader market sentiment if the EIA confirms the figures.
In this article, we’ll turn our gaze onto five stocks that traders have their eyes on today, which are Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC), CSX Corporation (NASDAQ:CSX), Fluidigm Corporation (NASDAQ:FLDM), eBay Inc (NASDAQ:EBAY), and Mercadolibre Inc (NASDAQ:MELI). In addition to analyzing the latest news surrounding these stock, we’ll also use the latest 13F filings data to determine how the smart money was positioned in each stock.
While there are many metrics that investors can assess in the investment process, the hedge fund sentiment is something that is often overlooked. However, hedge funds and other institutional investors allocate significant resources while making their bets and their long-term focus makes them the perfect investors to emulate. This is supported by our research, which determined that following the small-cap stocks that hedge funds are collectively bullish on can help a smaller investor to beat the S&P 500 by around 95 basis points per month (see the details here).
The inevitable has finally happened; after several weeks of doing everything possible to keep his job, Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC) CEO John Stumpf bowed to pressure from both inside and outside the bank and announced his retirement effective immediately. To replace Stumpf, Wells Fargo’s Board has named Tim Sloan as the new CEO and Stephen Sanger as the new Chairman. Sloan was previously Wells Fargo’s President and Chief Operating Officer. Wells Fargo bulls hope the retirement of Stumpf will help the bank, media, and public move on from the company’s recent sales-tactics scandal. Warren Buffett‘s Berkshire Hathaway is one of those bulls, owning almost 480 million shares of Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC) at the end of June.
CSX Corporation (NASDAQ:CSX) earned $0.48 per share on sales of $2.71 billion for its third quarter, beating the Street’s estimates by $0.03 and $20 million respectively. Sales fell by 7.8% year-over-year as energy (coal in particular) and macroeconomic headwinds continued to weigh down its top-line. Despite the difficult conditions, CSX’s operating ratio came in at 69.0%, reflecting strong cost performance. As for guidance, CSX continues to target a mid-60’s operating ratio target over the long-term. Of the 749 hedge funds that we track which filed 13Fs for the June quarter, 41 owned $833.76 million worth of CSX Corporation (NASDAQ:CSX) shares on June 30. While the number of shareholders was up from 40 on March 31, the value of their holdings tumbled from $1.13 billion despite shares being marginally up during the period.
On the next page we’ll examine why Fluidigm and Mercadolibre have slipped in after-hours trading, while eBay is gaining.