WellPoint, Inc. (WLP): How Do Hedge Funds and Insider Feel?

WellPoint, Inc. (NYSE:WLP) has seen some interest from hedge funds of late, however many fund managers appear to be waiting to see how ObamaCare will affect the company.

Issues related to the website are now well-known. ObamaCare is expected to change the dynamics of managed medical care in the U.S. as the Affordable Care Act will have impact on medical costs, reimbursements as well as premiums. WellPoint Inc. (NYSE:WLP) is betting big on the rollout and has offered coverage in a dozen markets. The issues with Healthcare.gov have prompted the company to roll the marketing of its healthcare offerings but the company is confident that once the issues are sorted out, enrollments will see a significant uptake.

 

WellPoint, Inc. (NYSE:WLP)

Hedge fund activity in WellPoint, Inc. (NYSE:WLP) 

Hedge-fund managers are also adopting a wait-and-see attitude related to this stock. The company attracted only one new hedge fund during the third quarter. WLP was in 51 hedge-fund portfolios at the end of September.

Jean-Marie Eveillard’s First Eagle Investment Management had the most valuable position in WellPoint, Inc. (NYSE:WLP), worth close to $439 million, comprising 1.3 percent of its total 13F portfolio. Sitting at the No. 2 spot is Orbis Investment Management, led by William B. Gray, holding a $410.3-million position; the fund has 3.1 percent of its portfolio invested in the stock. Some of the other hedge funds holding WellPoint, Inc. stock in the third quarter are Donald Yacktman’s Yacktman Asset Management, Robert Rodriguez and Steven Romick’s First Pacific Advisors LLC and Clint Carlson’s Carlson Capital. Gabe Hoffman-managed Accipiter Capital Management has invested almost 11 percent of its portfolio in WellPoint, Inc. at the end of the last quarter.

Some big names in hedge funds like Conan Laughlin-managed North Tide Capital assembled new positions in the third quarter in WellPoint, Inc. (NYSE:WLP). North Tide Capital had $87.8 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. SAC Subsidiary’s CR Intrinsic Investors also initiated a $27.2-million position during the quarter. The other funds with new positions in the stock are Arthur B Cohen and Joseph Healey’s Healthcor Management LP, Peter Rathjens, Bruce Clarke and John Campbell’s Arrowstreet Capital, and Chao Ku’s Nine Chapters Capital Management.

Insider trading activity in WellPoint, Inc. (NYSE:WLP)

Insider trading, seen over a 180-day horizon gives valuable insights about the company. Over the latest six-month timeframe, WellPoint, Inc. (NYSE:WLP) has seen zero unique insider buys and eight insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

Let’s correlate hedge-fund and insider trading activity at WellPoint, Inc. (NYSE:WLP) with other companies in the same industry – health care plans industry and also having market caps similar to WellPoint, Inc. These stocks are UnitedHealth Group Inc. (NYSE:UNH), Express Scripts Holding Company (NASDAQ:ESRX), Humana Inc (NYSE:HUM), Aetna Inc. (NYSE:AET), and CIGNA Corporation (NYSE:CI).

Company Name # of Hedge Funds # of Insiders Buying # of Insiders Selling
UnitedHealth Group Inc. (NYSE:UNH) 46 1 3
Express Scripts Holding Company (NASDAQ:ESRX) 69 0 8
Humana Inc (NYSE:HUM) 32 1 10
Aetna Inc. (NYSE:AET) 55 0 4
CIGNA Corporation (NYSE:CI) 44 0 9

Express Scripts Holding Company (NASDAQ:ESRX) is quite a favorite among hedge-fund managers with 69 fund managers betting their monies on the company as against 51 in WellPoint, Inc. (NYSE:WLP), though its market cap is more than twice that of WellPoint, Inc. Aetna Inc. (NYSE:AET) also managed to attract more hedge funds than WellPoint, Inc. Humana Inc (NYSE:HUM) was popular among insiders for trading in the third quarter.


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