What Smart Money Thinks about Flowers Foods, Inc. (FLO)?

Since Flowers Foods, Inc. (NYSE:FLO) has gone through declining sentiment from the aggregate hedge fund industry, we can see that there is a sect of funds who were dropping their positions entirely between July and September. Intriguingly, Greg Poole’s Echo Street Capital Management said goodbye to the largest investment of all the investors studied by Insider Monkey, worth about $21 million in stock. Jim Simons’ Renaissance Technologies, also dumped its stock, about $18.2 million worth.

Let’s also examine hedge fund activity in other stocks similar to Flowers Foods, Inc. (NYSE:FLO). These stocks are Hexcel Corporation (NYSE:HXL), Companhia Brasileira de Distrib. (ADR) (NYSE:CBD), DST Systems, Inc. (NYSE:DST), and Lazard Ltd (NYSE:LAZ). This group of stocks’ market caps match FLO’s market cap.

Ticker No of HFs with positions Total Value of HF Positions (x1000) Change in HF Position
HXL 12 60634 0
CBD 6 37945 -1
DST 24 366216 6
LAZ 14 420808 -4

As you can see these stocks had an average of 14 hedge funds with bullish positions at the end of September and the average amount invested in these stocks was $221 million. That figure was $150 million in FLO’s case. DST Systems, Inc. (NYSE:DST) is the most popular stock in this table. On the other hand Companhia Brasileira de Distrib. (ADR) (NYSE:CBD) is the least popular one with only six bullish hedge fund positions. Flowers Foods, Inc. (NYSE:FLO) is not the most popular stock in this group but hedge fund interest is still above average. This is a slightly positive signal but we’d rather spend our time researching stocks that hedge funds are piling on. In this regard DST Systems, Inc. (NYSE:DST) might be a better candidate to consider taking a long position in.