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Is BLL Stock A Buy or Sell?

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·6 min read
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At Insider Monkey, we pore over the filings of nearly 887 top investment firms every quarter, a process we have now completed for the latest reporting period. The data we've gathered as a result gives us access to a wealth of collective knowledge based on these firms' portfolio holdings as of December 31st. In this article, we will use that wealth of knowledge to determine whether or not Ball Corporation (NYSE:BLL) makes for a good investment right now.

Is BLL stock a buy or sell? Prominent investors were buying. The number of bullish hedge fund positions increased by 11 in recent months. Ball Corporation (NYSE:BLL) was in 44 hedge funds' portfolios at the end of December. The all time high for this statistic is 44. This means the bullish number of hedge fund positions in this stock currently sits at its all time high. Our calculations also showed that BLL isn't among the 30 most popular stocks among hedge funds (click for Q4 rankings). There were 33 hedge funds in our database with BLL holdings at the end of September.

In the financial world there are dozens of tools market participants employ to evaluate publicly traded companies. Some of the best tools are hedge fund and insider trading sentiment. Our experts have shown that, historically, those who follow the best picks of the top fund managers can outclass the broader indices by a healthy amount (see the details here).

NAVELLIER & ASSOCIATES
NAVELLIER & ASSOCIATES

Louis Navellier of Navellier & Associates

At Insider Monkey we leave no stone unturned when looking for the next great investment idea. Recently Oregon became the first state to legalize psychedelic mushrooms which are shown to have promising results in treating depression, addiction, and PTSD in early stage academic studies. So, we are checking out this psychedelic drug stock idea right now. We go through lists like the 10 best biotech stocks to invest in to pick the next stock that will deliver a 10x return. Even though we recommend positions in only a tiny fraction of the companies we analyze, we check out as many stocks as we can. We read hedge fund investor letters and listen to stock pitches at hedge fund conferences. You can subscribe to our free daily newsletter on our homepage (or at the end of this article). Keeping this in mind we're going to review the key hedge fund action encompassing Ball Corporation (NYSE:BLL).

Do Hedge Funds Think BLL Is A Good Stock To Buy Now?

At the end of the fourth quarter, a total of 44 of the hedge funds tracked by Insider Monkey were bullish on this stock, a change of 33% from the third quarter of 2020. By comparison, 44 hedge funds held shares or bullish call options in BLL a year ago. With hedge funds' positions undergoing their usual ebb and flow, there exists a select group of noteworthy hedge fund managers who were adding to their holdings significantly (or already accumulated large positions).

Among these funds, Chilton Investment Company held the most valuable stake in Ball Corporation (NYSE:BLL), which was worth $299.2 million at the end of the fourth quarter. On the second spot was D1 Capital Partners which amassed $144.1 million worth of shares. Echo Street Capital Management, Iridian Asset Management, and MIG Capital were also very fond of the stock, becoming one of the largest hedge fund holders of the company. In terms of the portfolio weights assigned to each position Chilton Investment Company allocated the biggest weight to Ball Corporation (NYSE:BLL), around 8.54% of its 13F portfolio. Bluegrass Capital Partners is also relatively very bullish on the stock, dishing out 7.97 percent of its 13F equity portfolio to BLL.

As one would reasonably expect, specific money managers were breaking ground themselves. Arrowstreet Capital, managed by Peter Rathjens, Bruce Clarke and John Campbell, initiated the most outsized position in Ball Corporation (NYSE:BLL). Arrowstreet Capital had $9.5 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. Joseph Cornell's Bluegrass Capital Partners also made a $9.3 million investment in the stock during the quarter. The other funds with brand new BLL positions are Mark R. Freeman's Socorro Asset Management, Peter Avellone's Cartenna Capital, and Louis Navellier's Navellier & Associates.

Let's now review hedge fund activity in other stocks - not necessarily in the same industry as Ball Corporation (NYSE:BLL) but similarly valued. We will take a look at Schlumberger Limited. (NYSE:SLB), Copart, Inc. (NASDAQ:CPRT), Datadog, Inc. (NASDAQ:DDOG), Chunghwa Telecom Co., Ltd (NYSE:CHT), PACCAR Inc (NASDAQ:PCAR), Bilibili Inc. (NASDAQ:BILI), and Eversource Energy (NYSE:ES). This group of stocks' market valuations are closest to BLL's market valuation.

[table] Ticker, No of HFs with positions, Total Value of HF Positions (x1000), Change in HF Position SLB,50,1226025,-3 CPRT,46,1137710,-10 DDOG,52,2899490,10 CHT,5,157212,0 PCAR,34,418647,0 BILI,46,3083768,9 ES,24,511581,4 Average,36.7,1347776,1.4 [/table]

View table here if you experience formatting issues.

As you can see these stocks had an average of 36.7 hedge funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $1348 million. That figure was $944 million in BLL's case. Datadog, Inc. (NASDAQ:DDOG) is the most popular stock in this table. On the other hand Chunghwa Telecom Co., Ltd (NYSE:CHT) is the least popular one with only 5 bullish hedge fund positions. Ball Corporation (NYSE:BLL) is not the most popular stock in this group but hedge fund interest is still above average. Our overall hedge fund sentiment score for BLL is 81.5. Stocks with higher number of hedge fund positions relative to other stocks as well as relative to their historical range receive a higher sentiment score. This is a slightly positive signal but we'd rather spend our time researching stocks that hedge funds are piling on. Our calculations showed that top 30 most popular stocks among hedge funds returned 81.2% in 2019 and 2020, and outperformed the S&P 500 ETF (SPY) by 26 percentage points. These stocks gained 5.3% in 2021 through March 19th and beat the market again by 0.8 percentage points. Unfortunately BLL wasn't nearly as popular as these 30 stocks and hedge funds that were betting on BLL were disappointed as the stock returned -12.7% since the end of December (through 3/19) and underperformed the market. If you are interested in investing in large cap stocks with huge upside potential, you should check out the top 30 most popular stocks among hedge funds as many of these stocks already outperformed the market since 2019.

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

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