Wyndham Worldwide Corporation (WYN): Insiders Aren’t Crazy About It But Hedge Funds Love It

Wyndham Worldwide Corporation (NYSE:WYN) is in the spotlight on the markets this week, but not necessarily for its own news of recognition for its efforts in philanthropy and charity, as evidenced by recognition from the National Gay ^ Lesbian Chamber of Commerce and the Human Rights Campaign’s Corporate Equality Index. Nor is the company’s stock hitting highs after the company announced that it was offering discounts of up to 30 percent off at all of its more than 7,000 hotel and resort properties around the world. No, the highlight is because of the IPO of a competitive chain, Hilton Hoels Corp (NYSE:HLT), which made its debut last week at $20 a share and is currently just south of $22. Hotel stocks in general are hot right now with the holiday travel season upon us, but is Wyndham Worldwide Corporation stock a bargain on its own, or it is just a beneficiary of “a rising tide lifts all boats”? The best stock pickers are taking an optimistic view.

 

Wyndham Worldwide Corporation (NYSE:WYN)

What does the smart money think about Wyndham Worldwide Corporation (NYSE:WYN)?

At the end of the third quarter, 44 of the hedge funds tracked by our friends at Insider Monkey were long in this stock, a 16-percent increase from the previous quarter. With the smart money’s positions undergoing their usual ebb and flow, there exists an “upper tier” of notable hedge fund managers who were upping their holdings considerably.

Of the funds tracked by Insider Monkey, David Cohen and Harold Levy’s Iridian Asset Management had the most valuable position in Wyndham Worldwide Corporation (NYSE:WYN), worth close to $352 million, amounting to 4.7 percent of its total 13F portfolio. The second-most bullish hedge fund manager is Stephen Mandel of Lone Pine Capital, with a $347.9-million position; the fund has 1.6 percent of its portfolio invested in the stock. Remaining peers that hold long positions comprise Christopher Medlock James’ Partner Fund Management, John Griffin’s Blue Ridge Capital and D. E. Shaw’s D E Shaw.

Consequently, key money managers were leading the bulls’ herd. Highfields Capital Management, managed by Jonathon Jacobson, established the most valuable position in Wyndham Worldwide Corporation (NYSE:WYN). Highfields Capital Management had $9.8 million invested in the company at the end of the quarter. John Wu’s Sureview Capital also made a $9.1-million investment in the stock during the quarter. The other funds with brand new WYN positions are Millennium Management Subsidiary’s Decade Capital Management, Chao Ku’s Nine Chapters Capital Management, and Curtis Macnguyen’s Ivory Capital (Investment Mgmt).

How have insiders been trading Wyndham Worldwide Corporation (NYSE:WYN)?

Insider buying is best served when the company we’re looking at has seen transactions within the past half-year. Over the latest half-year time frame, Wyndham Worldwide Corporation (NYSE:WYN) has seen zero unique insider buys and seven insider sales (see the details of insider trades here).

Let’s also review hedge fund and insider activity in other stocks similar to Wyndham Worldwide Corporation (NYSE:WYN). These stocks are Marriott International Inc (NYSE:MAR), Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc (NYSE:HOT), Hyatt Hotels Corporation (NYSE:H), Expedia Inc (NASDAQ:EXPE), and InterContinental Hotels Group PLC (ADR) (NYSE:IHG). This group of stocks is in the lodging industry and their market caps resemble WYN’s market cap.

Company Name # of Hedge Funds # of Insiders Buying # of Insiders Selling
Marriott International Inc (NYSE:MAR) 37 0 10
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc (NYSE:HOT) 47 0 10
Hyatt Hotels Corporation (NYSE:H) 22 0 3
Expedia Inc (NASDAQ:EXPE) 50 0 2
InterContinental Hotels Group PLC (ADR) (NYSE:IHG) 13 0 0

Among this peer group, Wyndham Worldwide Corporation (NYSE:WYN) is in he middle of the pack in terms of popularity among hedge funds, trailing Expedia Inc (NASDAQ:EXPE) and Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc (NYSE:HOT).  Wyndham Worldwide Corporation insider activity is right at the average in this peer group.


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