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Investors expand bets on tech stocks as sector still fuels market gains -filings

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NEW YORK – Several hedge funds expanded their bets on big technology stocks including Amazon, Microsoft and Meta Platforms even as these companies stumbled some during the third quarter after having fueled broad market gains this year, new regulatory filings show.

Tiger Global Management, a widely watched fund in the investment world, increased its holding of Nvidia, whose semiconductors back artificial-intelligence systems, by 77% during the third quarter. It boosted its bet on Alphabet by 40%, the filings show.

The firm also raised its Meta investment by 4%, boosted its bet on Microsoft by 8% and increased its Amazon stake by 6.5%.

Tiger Global and other hedge funds nursed heavy losses in 2022 when technology stocks skidded lower. But many fund managers put more money to work in the sector this year when seven big tech stocks raced higher, playing a critical role in helping the broader stock market recover after last year’s drop.

Bill Ackman, whose Pershing Square Capital Management is widely followed for investment clues, reported raising his stake in Alphabet Inc. Class A shares by nearly 100% to own 4.4 million shares at the end of the quarter.

Daniel Loeb’s Third Point said in a filing that it made a new bet on Meta, owning 1.1 million shares at the end of the quarter.

Coatue Management, founded by Philippe Laffont, increased its position in Meta by 9% to own 6.2 million shares on September 30, the filings show.

Glen Kacher’s Light Street Capital increased its position in Amazon by 5% after having reported a new position in the online retailer in the second quarter.

Ratan Capital Management reported even bigger increases, saying it increased its Amazon holding by 72% and boosted its Meta stake by 67%. The fund also reported a new position in Alphabet, saying it owned 20,000 shares on September 30.

Goldman Sachs reported in late August that hedge funds held record exposure to the seven biggest tech stocks by market capitalization.

2023 has been a better year for investors, with the S&P 500 .SPX stock market index up 18% since January after a 20% drop in 2022. The rally has been largely fueled by a small number of companies – the so-called magnificent seven.

Since January, Meta’s share price has surged 169% while Amazon gained 70% and Microsoft is up 53%.

Investment managers must disclose what they hold in U.S. stocks at the end of each quarter and report that information to the Securities and Exchange Commission 45 days after the end of the quarter. The deadline for so-called 13-F filings for the third quarter is on Tuesday.

While 13-F filings are backward-looking, they are closely watched by investors for trends.

But investors, many of whom suffered big losses only last year, also showed caution during the third quarter when markets stumbled some and certain tech stocks lost some ground.

Light Street cut its stake in Meta by 31% after having increased it 27% in the second quarter and Coatue cut its stake in Microsoft by 28% and reduced its stake in Amazon by 15%.

Representatives for the funds did not immediately respond to requests for comment. – Reuters

Jino Nicolas

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