The biggest hedge funds are dumping Apple and Netflix shares

He’ll manage, somehow.
He’ll manage, somehow.
Image: Reuters/Stephen Lam
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The world’s largest hedge funds cut their holdings in Netflix and Apple more aggressively than any other stocks in the second quarter, according to a new report.

The 50 biggest hedge funds sold $2 billion worth of Netflix shares and $1.8 billion in Apple stock between April and June, per an analysis of regulatory disclosures by FactSet.

In the first quarter of this year, hedgies also dumped Apple in droves, selling $7 billion worth of shares. Despite selling its billionth iPhone recently, slowing growth and a lackluster product pipeline has convinced some investors that now is the time to take profits in the tech giant. As ever, Warren Buffett thinks he sees value where others don’t, and has been buying more Apple shares recently, for what it’s worth.

Netflix, meanwhile, has spooked the markets with weak subscriber numbers outside of the US, driving hedge funds to make big bets against the streaming company. The company’s stock is down 15% so far this year.

As far as what hedge funds bought in the second quarter, the two biggest names were Starwood Hotels and St. Jude Medical. Aside from their views on the hospitality and health-care sectors, both were mainly M&A plays—Starwood is in the process of being bought by Marriott and St. Jude is in the sights of Abbott Labs, giving the share prices of both companies a big boost.

What was the result of all this buying and selling? The combined portfolio of the top 50 hedge funds lost 1.2% of its value in the second quarter. The S&P 500 index made a 2.5% gain over the same period.