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Is PGC A Good Stock To Buy Now?

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The latest 13F reporting period has come and gone, and Insider Monkey is again at the forefront when it comes to making use of this gold mine of data. We have processed the filings of the more than 817 world-class investment firms that we track and now have access to the collective wisdom contained in these filings, which are based on their September 30 holdings, data that is available nowhere else. Should you consider Peapack-Gladstone Financial Corp (NASDAQ:PGC) for your portfolio? We'll look to this invaluable collective wisdom for the answer.

Is PGC a good stock to buy now? Peapack-Gladstone Financial Corp (NASDAQ:PGC) investors should pay attention to a decrease in support from the world's most elite money managers of late. Peapack-Gladstone Financial Corp (NASDAQ:PGC) was in 16 hedge funds' portfolios at the end of the third quarter of 2020. The all time high for this statistic is 18. There were 17 hedge funds in our database with PGC positions at the end of the second quarter. Our calculations also showed that PGC isn't among the 30 most popular stocks among hedge funds (click for Q3 rankings and see the video for a quick look at the top 5 stocks).

Video: Watch our video about the top 5 most popular hedge fund stocks.

According to most shareholders, hedge funds are assumed to be slow, outdated financial tools of years past. While there are over 8000 funds with their doors open at present, We look at the aristocrats of this group, around 850 funds. These money managers orchestrate most of the smart money's total capital, and by tracking their finest equity investments, Insider Monkey has unearthed various investment strategies that have historically outstripped the S&P 500 index. Insider Monkey's flagship short hedge fund strategy surpassed the S&P 500 short ETFs by around 20 percentage points annually since its inception in March 2017. Our portfolio of short stocks lost 13% since February 2017 (through November 17th) even though the market was up 65% during the same period. We just shared a list of 6 short targets in our latest quarterly update .

Michael Price MFP Investors
Michael Price MFP Investors

Michael Price of MFP Investors

At Insider Monkey we scour multiple sources to uncover the next great investment idea. For example, Federal Reserve has been creating trillions of dollars electronically to keep the interest rates near zero. We believe this will lead to inflation and boost real estate prices. So, we recommended this real estate stock to our monthly premium newsletter subscribers. We go through lists like the 15 best blue chip stocks to pick the best large-cap stocks to buy. 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 website. Keeping this in mind we're going to take a look at the key hedge fund action surrounding Peapack-Gladstone Financial Corp (NASDAQ:PGC).

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

At Q3's end, a total of 16 of the hedge funds tracked by Insider Monkey were long this stock, a change of -6% from the second quarter of 2020. On the other hand, there were a total of 17 hedge funds with a bullish position in PGC a year ago. With hedgies' capital changing hands, there exists a few notable hedge fund managers who were boosting their holdings considerably (or already accumulated large positions).

Among these funds, Endicott Management held the most valuable stake in Peapack-Gladstone Financial Corp (NASDAQ:PGC), which was worth $7.6 million at the end of the third quarter. On the second spot was Renaissance Technologies which amassed $7.2 million worth of shares. Royce & Associates, EJF Capital, and MFP Investors 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 Endicott Management allocated the biggest weight to Peapack-Gladstone Financial Corp (NASDAQ:PGC), around 10.43% of its 13F portfolio. Seidman Investment Partnership is also relatively very bullish on the stock, setting aside 2.63 percent of its 13F equity portfolio to PGC.

Seeing as Peapack-Gladstone Financial Corp (NASDAQ:PGC) has faced bearish sentiment from the smart money, logic holds that there exists a select few hedge funds that decided to sell off their entire stakes last quarter. It's worth mentioning that Peter Algert and Kevin Coldiron's Algert Coldiron Investors dropped the biggest stake of all the hedgies tracked by Insider Monkey, comprising an estimated $0.3 million in stock. Greg Eisner's fund, Engineers Gate Manager, also cut its stock, about $0.3 million worth. These moves are important to note, as aggregate hedge fund interest was cut by 1 funds last quarter.

Let's also examine hedge fund activity in other stocks - not necessarily in the same industry as Peapack-Gladstone Financial Corp (NASDAQ:PGC) but similarly valued. These stocks are Affimed NV (NASDAQ:AFMD), Aldeyra Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:ALDX), Orphazyme A/S (NASDAQ:ORPH), Sunlands Technology Group (NYSE:STG), Landec Corporation (NASDAQ:LNDC), Itamar Medical Ltd. (NASDAQ:ITMR), and Biglari Holdings Inc (NYSE:BH). This group of stocks' market caps are closest to PGC's market cap.

[table] Ticker, No of HFs with positions, Total Value of HF Positions (x1000), Change in HF Position AFMD,16,60539,2 ALDX,17,102739,-2 ORPH,5,20668,5 STG,1,131,-1 LNDC,14,74381,-1 ITMR,9,38617,-1 BH,9,26358,-3 Average,10.1,46205,-0.1 [/table]

View table here if you experience formatting issues.

As you can see these stocks had an average of 10.1 hedge funds with bullish positions and the average amount invested in these stocks was $46 million. That figure was $33 million in PGC's case. Aldeyra Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:ALDX) is the most popular stock in this table. On the other hand Sunlands Technology Group (NYSE:STG) is the least popular one with only 1 bullish hedge fund positions. Peapack-Gladstone Financial Corp (NASDAQ:PGC) is not the most popular stock in this group but hedge fund interest is still above average. Our overall hedge fund sentiment score for PGC is 77.5. 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. Our calculations showed that top 20 most popular stocks among hedge funds returned 41.3% in 2019 and outperformed the S&P 500 ETF (SPY) by 10 percentage points. These stocks gained 30.7% in 2020 through December 14th and still beat the market by 15.8 percentage points. Hedge funds were also right about betting on PGC as the stock returned 48.6% since the end of Q3 (through 12/14) and outperformed the market. Hedge funds were rewarded for their relative bullishness.

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

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