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Holly LaFon
Holly LaFon
Articles (10163)  | Author's Website |

Facebook and Alphabet Are Most-Bought Stocks of Guru Investors in 4th Quarter

As the market slumped, they picked these tech and financial stocks

As the market slumped in the fourth quarter, investors tracked by GuruFocus gravitated to several tech and financial stocks, particularly Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) and Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG).

The S&P 500 index declined 13.97% in the fourth quarter, marking its worst stretch since the third quarter of 2011, when it fell 14.33%. During the storm, the most popular stocks among investors tracked by GuruFocus, a group of the world’s most prominent managers, most of whom have a value slant, were: Facebook, Google, (Buffett’s third-largest holding) Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC), Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) and Citigroup (NYSE:C).

According to the S&P 500 Screener, the investors preferred Facebook and Google to their rival Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), which ranked as the seventh most-bought stock in the index.

Other hot names held less appeal during the quarter. Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), Warren Buffett (Trades, Portfolio)’s largest holding, ranked far behind as the 21st most-bought stock. Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) trailed its big-bank peers at No. 11. JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM), a financial stock Buffett bought more of during the quarter, was 46 on the list.

The most-bought stocks

Facebook (NASDAQ:FB)

At 26, more investors GuruFocus tracks bought shares of Facebook than any other stocks in the S&P 500 during the fourth quarter. The company’s shares fell 19% in the fourth quarter. The largest new purchase by a GuruFocus investor was made by Glenn Greenberg (Trades, Portfolio), who made it 5.62% of his long portfolio. Steve Mandel (Trades, Portfolio) had the largest position with 0.23% of shares outstanding.

Facebook Inc. has a market cap of $477.67 billion; its shares were traded around $167.37 Monday with a price-earnings ratio of 22.14 and price-sales ratio of 8.75. Facebook Inc. had annual average earnings growth of 48.30% over the past five years.

Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG)

Twenty investors GuruFocus tracks bought Google shares during the fourth quarter, making it the second most popular stock of the index. Its stock price declined 14% during the quarter. Al Gore (Trades, Portfolio)’s Generation Investment Management established the largest new position at 3.92% of its long portfolio. Investment firm Dodge & Cox holds the largest position with 0.44% of its shares outstanding.

Alphabet Inc. has a market cap of $800.56 billion; its shares were traded around $1,147.80 Monday with a price-earnings ratio of 26.43 and price-sales ratio of 6.17. Alphabet Inc had an annual average earnings growth of 15.3% over the past 10 years. GuruFocus rated Alphabet Inc. the business predictability rank of 3.5-star.

Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC)

Twenty investors GuruFocus tracks bought shares of Wells Fargo during the quarter, making it tied with Google for the number of purchasers, though it has a lower overall weighting in their portfolios. David Tepper (Trades, Portfolio) started the largest new position at 0.69% of his long portfolio. Warren Buffett (Trades, Portfolio) has the largest position with 9.32% of shares outstanding.

Wells Fargo & Co. has a market cap of $227.97 billion; its shares were traded around $50.11 Monday with a price-earnings ratio of 11.72 and price-sales ratio of 2.79. The trailing 12-month dividend yield of Wells Fargo & Co. is 3.40%. The forward dividend yield of Wells Fargo & Co. is 3.60%.

Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS)

Twenty investors also purchased Goldman Sachs shares, with a lower overall weighting in their combined portfolios. The stock’s price dropped 26% over the quarter. The Yacktman Focused Fund (Trades, Portfolio) started the largest new position at 0.68% of its portfolio. Warren Buffett (Trades, Portfolio) has the largest Goldman Sachs stake with 4.93% of shares outstanding.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. has a market cap of $72.17 billion; its shares were traded around $195.98 Monday with a price-earnings ratio of 7.75 and price-sales ratio of 2.30. The trailing 12-month dividend yield of Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is 1.63%. The forward dividend yield of Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is 1.61%.

Citigroup (NYSE:C)

Nineteen investors purchased Citigroup shares, making it the fifth most-bought stock in the index. The stock’s price plunged 28% in the fourth quarter. Steven Cohen (Trades, Portfolio) started the largest new position at 0.89% of his long portfolio. Jeff Ubben (Trades, Portfolio) has the largest position, with 1.33% of shares outstanding.

Citigroup Inc. has a market cap of $149.91 billion; its shares were traded around $63.75 Monday with a price-earnings ratio of 9.54 and price-sales ratio of 2.20. The trailing 12-month dividend yield of Citigroup Inc. is 2.61%. The forward dividend yield of Citigroup is 2.79%.

See more of the most popular stocks of the quarter at GuruFocus’ All-in-One Screener 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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