Dutch blue chips under scrutiny as Norway's SWF, short sellers raise activity

Jonathan Boyd
clock
Dutch blue chips under scrutiny as Norway's SWF, short sellers raise activity

Increasing activity by Norges Bank, Europe's biggest equity investor through its management of Norway's sovereign wealth fund (Pension Fund Global), as well as LLCs known for taking bets against stocks have put a spotlight on a number of key Dutch blue chips.

According to data published by AFM, the Dutch Authority for the Financial Markets, Norges Bank has issued obligatory notifiations on its activities including AMG Advanced Metallurgical Group, Akzo Nobel, ASM International, Unilever and PostNL in the regulator's list of " Substantial holdings and gross short positions".

The notifications imply Norges Bank may see significant dispertion of performance occurring. It seems to have increased its holding of PostNL in recent weeks, but reduced its holding of AMG Advanced Metallurgical Group.

The latter has been under significant pressure from short sellers, as per AFM's "Net short positions (current)" list, which shows that D. E. Shaw, WorldQuant, Arrowstreet Capital, Susquehanna International Holdings, Marshall Wace, Public Equity Partners Management, PDT Partners and Merian Global Investors have positioned for AMG's price falling.

However, the data suggests a less clear-cut case for PostNL. While Norges Bank may have increased its stake in recent weeks, betting against the company are investors including Marshall Wace, AHL Partners, Connor, Clark & Lunn Investment Management, Capital Fund Management, Systematica Investments and PDT Partners.

Norway's Pension Fund Global has holdings in more than 9,000 companies globally, or about 1.4% of all the world's listed companies. However, its publicly available holdings data currently only run to the end of December 2018: https://www.nbim.no/en/the-fund/holdings/holdings-as-at-31.12.2018/.

 

 

Jonathan Boyd
Author spotlight

Jonathan Boyd

Editorial Director of Open Door Media Publishing Ltd, and Editor of InvestmentEurope.