Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK)
– Investors with Long Positions (as of September 30): 34
– Aggregate Value of Investors’ Holdings (as of September 30): $1.21 Billion
Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK) also received more attention from the hedge fund industry during the September quarter, with the number of smart money investors long Chesapeaker growing to 34 from 33 during the three-month period. Expectedly, the overall value of these positions declined by roughly 30% during the period as shares struggled. Funds tracked by Insider Monkey owned 24.80% of the company’s outstanding shares, which are 78% in the red year-to-date, at the end of the latest quarter. At the end of September, Chesapeake cut its workforce by roughly 15% in an attempt to reduce costs. At the same time, Chesapeake anticipates operating a mere 14 rigs at the beginning of 2016, compared with an average of 65 rigs in 2014. There are also growing concerns about the company’s weak balance sheet, which might put even more weight on its stock performance. Activist investor Carl Icahn of Icahn Capital LP owns a 73.05 million-share stake in Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK) as of the end of the third quarter.
California Resources Corp (NYSE:CRC)
– Investors with Long Positions (as of September 30): 31
– Aggregate Value of Investors’ Holdings (as of September 30): $293.19 Million
A total of 31 hedge funds from our database were invested in California Resources Corp (NYSE:CRC) at the end of September, compared to 37 at the end of June. These smart money investors held 29.30% of the company’s shares at the end of the latest quarter, while the value of their investments in the company shrank heavily, to $293.19 million from $703.87 million quarter-over-quarter. The independent oil and natural gas exploration and production company sells all of its crude oil in the California markets, and generally receives a premium associated with international waterborne-based prices (California primarily imports oil as a result of the energy deficit in the state). Nevertheless, the low crude oil-price environment has put significant weight on the company’s stock performance, as there are growing concerns about the company’s relatively week balance sheet. Thus, the company’s hedging activities are pivotal for implementing its capital investment program and for its ability to satisfy credit facility covenants. George Soros’ Soros Fund Management reported owning 9.12 million shares of California Resources Corp (NYSE:CRC) via its latest 13F filing.
Weatherford International Plc (NYSE:WFT)
– Investors with Long Positions (as of September 30): 29
– Aggregate Value of Investors’ Holdings (as of September 30): $598.31 Million
Weatherford International Plc (NYSE:WFT) shares are down by 22% so far this year, but several financial hubs have great expectations for the company’s future financial performance. At the end of October, Oppenheimer reiterated its ‘Outperform’ rating on the stock and cut its price target to $13 from $14, which suggests upside potential of 46%. Meanwhile, the stock lost some of its appeal among the smart money monitored by our team in the third quarter, as the number of hedge funds with stakes in the company declined to 29 from 37 during the period. By the same token, the value of their investments dropped to $598.31 million from $840.96 million. The provider of products, equipment and services to the oil and natural gas exploration and production industry, has been severely impacted by the depressed oil and gas industry in 2015. As a result, the company completed a headcount reduction of 11,000 through the end of September and increased its targeted headcount reduction to 14,000 during the third quarter. Weatherford anticipates annualized savings of $803 million from these cost-cutting efforts. Israel Englander’s Millennium Management owns 14.92 million shares of Weatherford International Plc (NYSE:WFT) as of the end of the third quarter.