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Artisan Partners Increased its Casey’s General Stores (CASY) Stake, Here’s Why

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Artisan Partners, a high value-added investment management firm, published its ‘Artisan Small Cap Fund’ first quarter 2021 investor letter – a copy of which can be downloaded here. A return of -5.02% was recorded by its Investor Class: ARTSX, -4.99% by its Advisor Class: APDSX, and -4.95% by its Institutional Class: APHSX for the fourth quarter of 2020, all below the Russell 2000® Growth Index that delivered a 4.88% return and the Russell 2000® Index that was up by 12.70% for the same period. You can view the fund’s top 5 holdings to have a peek at their top bets for 2021.

Artisan Small Cap Fund, in its Q1 2021 investor letter, mentioned Casey's General Stores, Inc. (NASDAQ: CASY), and shared their insights on the company. Casey's General Stores, Inc. is a Ankeny, Iowa-based convenience store company that currently has an $8.3 billion market capitalization. Since the beginning of the year, CASY delivered a 26.67% return, while its 12-month gains are up by 55.53%. As of May 17, 2021, the stock closed at $223.84 per share.

Here is what Artisan Small Cap Fund has to say about Casey's General Stores, Inc. in its Q1 2021 investor letter:

"Casey’s General Stores, akin to 7-Eleven, engages in the management and operation of convenience stores and gasoline stations serving rural customers throughout the Midwest. A new leadership team took over in 2019 and has since laid out a plan to transition Casey’s to a modern-day retailer. To make this transition, management has a long list of initiatives: procurement savings (merchandise and food ingredients), increased private label penetration, labor cost optimization, a loyalty program and frozen beverages. While the company has been impacted by decreased in-store traffic since the pandemic began, we believe it is well-positioned to excel throughout the course of this year as store traffic rebounds alongside an increase in COVID-19 vaccination rates. Given these strong internal and external tailwinds, we increased our position size during the quarter."

Pixabay/Public Domain

Our calculations show that Casey's General Stores, Inc. (NASDAQ: CASY) does not belong in our list of the 30 Most Popular Stocks Among Hedge Funds. As of the end of the fourth quarter of 2020, Casey's General Stores, Inc. was in 23 hedge fund portfolios, compared to 21 funds in the third quarter. CASY delivered a 5.86% return in the past 3 months.

The top 10 stocks among hedge funds returned 231.2% between 2015 and 2020, and outperformed the S&P 500 Index ETFs by more than 126 percentage points. We know it sounds unbelievable. You have been dismissing our articles about top hedge fund stocks mostly because you were fed biased information by other media outlets about hedge funds’ poor performance. You could have doubled the size of your nest egg by investing in the top hedge fund stocks instead of dumb S&P 500 ETFs. Here you can watch our video about the top 5 hedge fund stocks right now. All of these stocks had positive returns in 2020.

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Disclosure: None. This article is originally published at Insider Monkey.