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Landmark Bancorp, Inc. (LARK): Hedge Funds Watching From Afar

Asma UL Husna

We at Insider Monkey have gone over 752 13F filings that hedge funds and prominent investors are required to file by the SEC The 13F filings show the funds' and investors' portfolio positions as of September 30th. In this article, we look at what those funds think of Landmark Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:LARK) based on that data.

Hedge fund interest in Landmark Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:LARK) shares was flat at the end of last quarter. This is usually a negative indicator. The level and the change in hedge fund popularity aren't the only variables you need to analyze to decipher hedge funds' perspectives. A stock may witness a boost in popularity but it may still be less popular than similarly priced stocks. That's why at the end of this article we will examine companies such as Severn Bancorp Inc (NASDAQ:SVBI), CyberOptics Corporation (NASDAQ:CYBE), and Energous Corporation (NASDAQ:WATT) to gather more data points. Our calculations also showed that LARK isn't among the 30 most popular stocks among hedge funds (see the video below). Video: Click the image to watch our video about the top 5 most popular hedge fund stocks.

5 Most Popular Stocks Among Hedge Funds

In the financial world there are a large number of tools investors have at their disposal to grade stocks. A pair of the most under-the-radar tools are hedge fund and insider trading indicators. We have shown that, historically, those who follow the top picks of the best fund managers can outperform the broader indices by a solid amount. Insider Monkey's flagship best performing hedge funds strategy returned 91% since May 2014 and outperformed the Russell 2000 ETFs by nearly 40 percentage points. Our short strategy outperformed the S&P 500 short ETFs by 20 percentage points annually (see the details here). That's why we believe hedge fund sentiment is a useful indicator that investors should pay attention to.

Chuck Royce

Let's take a look at the latest hedge fund action surrounding Landmark Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:LARK).

How have hedgies been trading Landmark Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:LARK)?

Heading into the fourth quarter of 2019, a total of 2 of the hedge funds tracked by Insider Monkey held long positions in this stock, a change of 0% from one quarter earlier. The graph below displays the number of hedge funds with bullish position in LARK over the last 17 quarters. With hedgies' capital changing hands, there exists an "upper tier" of noteworthy hedge fund managers who were upping their stakes considerably (or already accumulated large positions).

LARK_nov2019

According to Insider Monkey's hedge fund database, Chuck Royce's Royce & Associates has the biggest position in Landmark Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:LARK), worth close to $3.7 million, corresponding to less than 0.1%% of its total 13F portfolio. The second largest stake is held by Renaissance Technologies, with a $2 million position; less than 0.1%% of its 13F portfolio is allocated to the stock. In terms of the portfolio weights assigned to each position Royce & Associates allocated the biggest weight to Landmark Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:LARK), around 0.03% of its portfolio.

Earlier we told you that the aggregate hedge fund interest in the stock was unchanged and we view this as a negative development. Even though there weren't any hedge funds dumping their holdings during the second quarter, there weren't any hedge funds initiating brand new positions. This indicates that hedge funds, at the very best, perceive this stock as dead money and they haven't identified any viable catalysts that can attract investor attention.

Let's now review hedge fund activity in other stocks - not necessarily in the same industry as Landmark Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:LARK) but similarly valued. These stocks are Severn Bancorp Inc (NASDAQ:SVBI), CyberOptics Corporation (NASDAQ:CYBE), Energous Corporation (NASDAQ:WATT), and Matinas Biopharma Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:MTNB). This group of stocks' market valuations are closest to LARK's market valuation.

[table] Ticker, No of HFs with positions, Total Value of HF Positions (x1000), Change in HF Position SVBI,3,10634,0 CYBE,4,5550,-1 WATT,5,1776,2 MTNB,5,6851,0 Average,4.25,6203,0.25 [/table]

View table here if you experience formatting issues.

As you can see these stocks had an average of 4.25 hedge funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $6 million. That figure was $6 million in LARK's case. Energous Corporation (NASDAQ:WATT) is the most popular stock in this table. On the other hand Severn Bancorp Inc (NASDAQ:SVBI) is the least popular one with only 3 bullish hedge fund positions. Compared to these stocks Landmark Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:LARK) is even less popular than SVBI. Hedge funds dodged a bullet by taking a bearish stance towards LARK. Our calculations showed that the top 20 most popular hedge fund stocks returned 34.7% in 2019 through November 22nd and outperformed the S&P 500 ETF (SPY) by 8.5 percentage points. Unfortunately LARK wasn't nearly as popular as these 20 stocks (hedge fund sentiment was very bearish); LARK investors were disappointed as the stock returned 2.6% during the fourth quarter (through 11/22) and underperformed the market. If you are interested in investing in large cap stocks with huge upside potential, you should check out the top 20 most popular stocks among hedge funds as 70 percent of these stocks already outperformed the market so far in Q4.

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

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