What This Metric Says about Philip Morris International Inc. (PM)

Because Philip Morris International Inc. (NYSE:PM) has experienced declining sentiment from hedge fund managers, logic holds that there were a few funds who sold off their entire stakes in the third quarter. At the top of the heap, Dmitry Balyasny’s Balyasny Asset Management dropped the biggest stake of all the hedgies followed by Insider Monkey, comprising about $48.8 million in stock. Anand Parekh’s fund, Alyeska Investment Group, also dumped its stock, about $47.2 million worth. These transactions are intriguing to say the least, as aggregate hedge fund interest fell by 2 funds in the third quarter.

Let’s now take a look at hedge fund activity in other stocks similar to Philip Morris International Inc. (NYSE:PM). These stocks are Medtronic, Inc. (NYSE:MDT), Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC), Toyota Motor Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:TM), and PepsiCo, Inc. (NYSE:PEP). This group of stocks’ market values are similar to PM’s market value.

Ticker No of HFs with positions Total Value of HF Positions (x1000) Change in HF Position
MDT 43 1294020 -7
INTC 68 4883403 11
TM 12 300189 -1
PEP 57 4790976 -1

As you can see these stocks had an average of 45 funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $2.82 billion. That figure was $4.52 billion in PM’s case. Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) is the most popular stock in this table with 68 funds reporting long positions. On the other hand Toyota Motor Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:TM) is the least popular one with only 12 bullish hedge fund holdings. Philip Morris International Inc. (NYSE:PM) is not the least popular stock in this group, but hedge fund interest is still below average. This is a slightly negative signal and we’d rather spend our time researching stocks that hedge funds are piling on. In this regard Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) might be a better candidate to consider a long position.