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The Liberty Braves Group (BATRK): Are Hedge Funds Right About This Stock?

Abigail Fisher

"Market volatility has picked up again over the past few weeks. Headlines highlight risks regarding interest rates, the Fed, China, house prices, auto sales, trade wars, and more. Uncertainty abounds. But doesn’t it always? I have no view on whether the recent volatility will continue for a while, or whether the market will be back at all-time highs before we know it. I remain focused on preserving and growing our capital, and continue to believe that the best way to do so is via a value-driven, concentrated, patient approach. I shun consensus holdings, rich valuations, and market fads, in favor of solid, yet frequently off-the-beaten-path, businesses run by excellent, aligned management teams, purchased at deep discounts to intrinsic value," are the words of Maran Capital's Dan Roller. His stock picks have been beating the S&P 500 Index handily. We pay attention to what hedge funds are doing in a particular stock before considering a potential investment because it works for us. So let’s take a glance at the smart money sentiment towards The Liberty Braves Group (NASDAQ:BATRK) and see how it was affected.

The Liberty Braves Group (NASDAQ:BATRK) shareholders have witnessed an increase in support from the world's most elite money managers of late. Our calculations also showed that BATRK isn't among the 30 most popular stocks among hedge funds.

Why do we pay any attention at all to hedge fund sentiment? Our research has shown that hedge funds' large-cap stock picks indeed failed to beat the market between 1999 and 2016. However, we were able to identify in advance a select group of hedge fund holdings that outperformed the market by 18 percentage points since May 2014 through December 3, 2018 (see the details here). We were also able to identify in advance a select group of hedge fund holdings that'll significantly underperform the market. We have been tracking and sharing the list of these stocks since February 2017 and they lost 24% through December 3, 2018. That's why we believe hedge fund sentiment is an extremely useful indicator that investors should pay attention to.

[caption id="attachment_375529" align="aligncenter" width="450"] Mario Gabelli of GAMCO Investors[/caption]

Mario Gabelli of GAMCO Investors

Let's take a look at the latest hedge fund action surrounding The Liberty Braves Group (NASDAQ:BATRK).

How are hedge funds trading The Liberty Braves Group (NASDAQ:BATRK)?

At Q3's end, a total of 26 of the hedge funds tracked by Insider Monkey were bullish on this stock, a change of 13% from the previous quarter. The graph below displays the number of hedge funds with bullish position in BATRK over the last 13 quarters. With hedgies' positions undergoing their usual ebb and flow, there exists an "upper tier" of noteworthy hedge fund managers who were adding to their stakes substantially (or already accumulated large positions).

BATRK_dec2018

Among these funds, Park West Asset Management held the most valuable stake in The Liberty Braves Group (NASDAQ:BATRK), which was worth $85.4 million at the end of the third quarter. On the second spot was Tensile Capital which amassed $52.5 million worth of shares. Moreover, Mason Capital Management, GAMCO Investors, and EastBay Asset Management were also bullish on The Liberty Braves Group (NASDAQ:BATRK), allocating a large percentage of their portfolios to this stock.

As industrywide interest jumped, key money managers were leading the bulls' herd. Tudor Investment Corp, managed by Paul Tudor Jones, established the most valuable position in The Liberty Braves Group (NASDAQ:BATRK). Tudor Investment Corp had $0.3 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. John A. Levin's Levin Capital Strategies also made a $0.2 million investment in the stock during the quarter. The other funds with new positions in the stock are Matthew Hulsizer's PEAK6 Capital Management and Andrew Feldstein and Stephen Siderow's Blue Mountain Capital.

Let's check out hedge fund activity in other stocks - not necessarily in the same industry as The Liberty Braves Group (NASDAQ:BATRK) but similarly valued. We will take a look at TriMas Corp (NASDAQ:TRS), The Liberty Braves Group (NASDAQ:BATRA), American Woodmark Corporation (NASDAQ:AMWD), and CURO Group Holdings Corp. (NYSE:CURO). This group of stocks' market values match BATRK's market value.

[table] Ticker, No of HFs with positions, Total Value of HF Positions (x1000), Change in HF Position TRS,16,142267,1 BATRA,8,68522,-1 AMWD,17,55957,8 CURO,16,184077,-2 Average,14.25,112706,1.5 [/table]

View table here if you experience formatting issues.

As you can see these stocks had an average of 14.25 hedge funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $113 million. That figure was $406 million in BATRK's case. American Woodmark Corporation (NASDAQ:AMWD) is the most popular stock in this table. On the other hand The Liberty Braves Group (NASDAQ:BATRA) is the least popular one with only 8 bullish hedge fund positions. Compared to these stocks The Liberty Braves Group (NASDAQ:BATRK) is more popular among hedge funds. Considering that hedge funds are fond of this stock in relation to its market cap peers, it may be a good idea to analyze it in detail and potentially include it in your portfolio.

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

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