Here's What This "Market-Destroying" Investor Has Been Buying

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Every quarter, many money managers have to disclose what they've bought and sold. Their latest moves can shine a bright light on smart stock picks.

Today let's look at Joel Greenblatt's Gotham Capital. It's of great interest to many investors because Greenblatt is the author of the well-regarded and best-selling The Little Book That Beats the Market and because of his system of seeking out companies with high returns on capital and hefty earnings yields. His "Magic Formula" has many fans. As my colleague Morgan Housel has noted, "The simple formula absolutely destroys market averages over time. Greenblatt backs this up with considerable statistical evidence."

Gotham Capital's stock portfolio totaled $1.2 billion in value as of March 31, 2012 and included positions in hundreds of stocks.

Interesting developments
So, what does Gotham Capital's latest quarterly 13F filing tell us? Here are a few interesting details:

New holdings include Frontier Communications (Nasdaq: FTR  ) and Halliburton (NYSE: HAL  ) . Frontier has struggled recently, and it sports significant debt as well as a sagging customer base. But to many investors, it has simply fallen to attractive levels. It slashed its dividend nearly in half a while back, but it's still yielding more than 10%.

Oilfield services giant Halliburton, meanwhile, also appears to be attractively priced, with a forward P/E ratio of 8, far lower than that of the S&P 500, and a PEG ratio of 0.5. It's serving companies involved in the controversial practice of fracking and expects to see more business in the Gulf of Mexico.

Among holdings in which Gotham Capital increased its stake was Southern Copper (NYSE: SCCO  ) . The company has been expanding its capacity, and a lot of new business might come from China. Rising prices for copper will also help the company.

Gotham Capital reduced its stake in lots of companies, including Flotek Industries (NYSE: FTK  ) . It's an oilfield services company that has been busy expanding its capacity domestically, and delving into Russia as well. Drilling activity is expected to rise in the near term, and this will be good for Flotek.

Finally, Gotham Capital unloaded many companies, including Denison Mines (NYSE: DNN  ) , a uranium producer that's selling off its U.S. assets and looking like it might get bought by a stronger rival. It recently posted a net loss for its first quarter, but it was a smaller loss than that of a year before.

We should never blindly copy any investor's moves, no matter how talented the investor. But it can be useful to keep an eye on what smart folks are doing. 13-F forms can be great places to find intriguing candidates for our portfolios.

Frontier Communications' dividend is massive, but it's not the only dividend payer that rewards you substantially. Check out our special free report, "Secure Your Future With 9 Rock-Solid Dividend Stocks," to learn of exceptional candidates for your portfolio.

Longtime Fool contributor Selena Maranjian, whom you can follow on Twitter, holds no position in any company mentioned. Click here to see her holdings and a short bio. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Halliburton. 

The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

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Related Tickers

10/21/2016 4:02 PM
FTK $14.02 Down -0.19 -1.34%
Flotek Industries CAPS Rating: *****
FTR $4.07 Down -0.02 -0.49%
Frontier Communica… CAPS Rating: ***
HAL $48.43 Down -0.32 -0.66%
Halliburton CAPS Rating: ****
SCCO $27.40 Down -0.34 -1.23%
Southern Copper CAPS Rating: ****