The top 10 US hedge funds were hit hard by US stock market performance in Q4, according to the latest quarterly Hedge Fund Tracker from S&P Global Market Intelligence. In total, the top funds managed USD159 billion in Q4, down USD44 billion from Q3.
The funds also decreased the total number of stock positions held from 441 to 427, the fewest stock positions held throughout 2015.
The worst performing sector of 2015 in the S&P 500 was also the most-bought sector by pure play hedge funds in Q4. The 10 largest funds bought USD1.5 billion in energy sector stocks during the quarter, with Pioneer Natural Resources and Williams Company ranking as the most-bought single stocks in the sector.
The financials sector was the most-sold among hedge funds, with a total of USD2.2 billion in net sells during Q4. The most-sold stock in the sector was Lloyds Banking Group.
The top five buys among hedge funds were American International Group (USD2.5 billion), The Priceline Group (USD1.6 billion), Valeant Pharmaceuticals (USD1.3 billion), Teva Pharmaceuticals (USD1.3 billion), and Apple (USD1.2 billion). Priceline was also the most popular new position among the largest hedge funds with three funds taking significant positions in the company.
The top five sells among hedge funds were Allergan (USD2.1 billion), Next Plc. (USD1 billion), Walgreens Boots Alliance (USD975 million), Lloyds Banking Group (USD903 million), and Halliburton Company (USD898 million).