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Holly LaFon
Holly LaFon
Articles (9179)  | Author's Website |

Leon Cooperman Buys 3 Stocks as Omega Closes to Outside Investors

Cooperman's firm returning outside money following SEC fines

November 29, 2018 | About:

Leon Cooperman (Trades, Portfolio)’s Omega Advisors established three holdings in the third quarter as it converts to a family office, filings showed.

The firm, which plans to return all outside investor capital by the end of the year, chopped 38 positions from its portfolio. Cooperman made the decision to close his hedge fund where he is chairman and CEO earlier in the year, saying in a client letter, “I don’t want to spend the rest of my life chasing the S&P 500.”

The investor faced $4.95 million in fines from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for insider trading in May 2017.

Cooperman founded Omega in 1991 after 25 years at Goldman Sachs. As of Oct. 31, 2018, the firm had $3.3 billion in assets under management, down from about $9.4 billion in 2015.

The long portfolio, valued around $2.31 billion at third quarter-end, listed 51 stocks, with 24.09% in the industrials sector, 17.52% in tech and 17.31% in energy. Cooperman’s largest holdings were: United Continental Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ:UAL), AMC Networks Inc. (NASDAQ:AMCX) and Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL).

In October, Cooperman said he thought "the whole structure of the market is broken" due to quantitative trading systems. Nevertheless, he thought it was adequately valued at the time.

"Basically, the things I look at suggest that the market is OK. It is not cheap, but it’s not expensive," he told CNBC. "You know it’s not an exciting message when I tell you the market's in a zone of fair valuation. Basically it doesn’t excite you, but that’s kind of where we’re at."

In the third quarter, he bought: Nielsen Holdings PLC (NYSE:NLSN), Cigna Corp. (NYSE:CI) and Mr. Cooper Group Inc. (COO).

New buys

Nielsen Holdings PLC (NYSE:NLSN)

Cooperman purchased 100,494 shares of the company, giving it 4.35% portfolio weight. The stock’s third-quarter share price averaged $27.

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Nielsen Holdings PLC has a market cap of $9.69 billion; its shares were traded around $27.31 Thursday with a price-earnings ratio of 30.69 and price-sales ratio of 1.49. The trailing 12-month dividend yield of Nielsen Holdings PLC stocks is 5.10%. The forward dividend yield of Nielsen Holdings PLC stocks is 5.36%. Nielsen Holdings PLC had an annual average earnings growth of 9.40% over the past five years.

Cigna Corp. (NYSE:CI)

Cooperman purchased 107,500 shares of the company, giving it 0.97% portfolio weight. The stock’s third-quarter share price averaged $185.

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Cigna Corp. has a market cap of $54.38 billion; its shares were traded around $223.30 Thursday with a price-earnings ratio of 19.86 and price-sales ratio of 1.25. The trailing 12-month dividend yield of Cigna Corp. stocks is 0.02%. The forward dividend yield of Cigna Corp. stocks is 0.02%.

Mr. Cooper Group Inc. (NASDAQ:COOP)

Cooperman purchased 12,719 shares of the company, giving it 0.55% portfolio weight. The stock’s third-quarter share price averaged $17.

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Mr. Cooper Group Inc. has a market cap of $1.32 billion; its shares were traded around $14.54 Thursday with a price-earnings ratio of 30.96.

See Leon Cooperman (Trades, Portfolio)’s portfolio here.

About the author:

Holly LaFon
I'm a financial journalist with a master of science in journalism from Medill at Northwestern University.

Visit Holly LaFon's Website


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