Every quarter, many money managers have to disclose what they've bought and sold, via "13F" filings. Their latest moves can shine a bright light on smart stock picks.
Today, let's look at investment advisory firm Douglass Winthrop Advisors. It’s of interest because it employs a Foolish "low-turnover, buy and hold strategy" -- and it has been served well by that, too. Since its inception roughly a decade ago, its equities investments have averaged annual gains of 8%, versus 6.8% for the S&P 500. Management noted in a recent letter to shareholders:
As committed long-term investors we keep our clients invested through good days and the inevitable bad ones. While this makes for some queasy moments, our clients understand that what really matters are long-term returns net of fees and taxes.
The company's reportable stock portfolio totaled about $700 million in value as of June 30, 2012.
So what does Douglass Winthrop’s latest quarterly 13F filing tell us? Here are a few interesting details:
New holdings include Phillips 66
Among holdings in which Douglass Winthrop increased its stake was gas and surface-coating specialist Praxair
Douglass Winthrop reduced its stake in several companies, including Sirius XM Radio
Finally, Douglass Winthrop unloaded several companies, such as New York Community Bancorp
Cliffs Natural Resources, meanwhile, recently yielded 5.9%. The stock has fallen sharply over the past year, largely due to a struggling coal industry. Still, bulls like its prospects, especially once the auto industry and others recover more strongly, as Cliff's metallurgical coal is used in making steel. Some recent good news is China’s plan to spend some $156 billion beefing up its infrastructure, which will certainly spur demand for coal. Cliffs seems attractively priced, as well.
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, and 13-F forms can be great places to find intriguing candidates for our portfolios.
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