Trading Places: Retail investors may be ‘tax-loss’ selling but fund managers are buying
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In this week’s recap of substantial holder movements four substantial holders bought shares in Zenith Energy (ASX:ZEN), a Shanghai investor bought into Anson Resources (ASX:ASN) and Sirtex’s founder bought into Syrah Resources (ASX:SYR).
Substantial shareholders hold 5 per cent or more of a company’s shares and these can be directors, individual investors or institutional investors.
Shareholders are required to announce to the exchange when they cross above or below the 5 per cent threshold and any change in their holdings while they remain above 5 per cent.
For the week where the financial year turned, there was a large amount of buying activity. Renewable energy play Zenith Energy had four substantial holders buy into the company. Microequities Asset Management and Pendal Group bought in with stakes of 5.51 per cent and 5.58 per cent, respectively. Microequities paid $1.9m and Pendal paid $2m.
Existing holders Moelis and Westoz Fund Management topped up their stakes, tipping in $4.4m between them. They now hold 6.4 per cent and 7.29 per cent, respectively.
Zenith sells to other energy businesses rather than to consumers. Among its clients are Chevron, specifically its Barrow Island project and, according to an investor presentation earlier this year, Chevron is also Zenith’s longest standing client. Zenith also counts Dacian Gold (ASX:DCN) and Newmont Mining as clients.
Spheria Asset Management increased its stakes in NZME (ASX:NZM) and GBST (ASX:GBT). The Queensland-based fund manager holds 14.46 per cent in the latter stock and it is on the brink of being acquired.
It spent $4m last Friday and with yesterday’s price rise, Spheria Asset Management would have made an $800,000 capital gain had it sold the stock.
Regal Funds Management became substantial holders in Capitol Health (ASX:CAJ), IVE Group (ASX:IGL) and Syrah Resources (ASX:SYR) with stakes of 7.10 per cent, 5.52 per cent and 11.56 per cent, respectively. Regal spent nearly $20m across these three stocks and in the case of IVE, came back for more in the same week.
The Phillip King-run fund manager also increased its stakes in Apiam Animal Health (ASX:AHZ) and Atrum Coal (ASX:ATU).
Also buying into Syrah was Auckland-based fund manager Harbour Asset Management, which bought another $5.6m and holds 6.62 per cent. Sirtex founder Bruce Gray became a substantial holder of Syrah as well, holding 5.2 per cent. Curiously they have consistently been one of the most shorted ASX small caps in recent weeks.
Alex Waislitz’s Thorney Opportunities increased its stake in Southern Cross Exploration (ASX:SXE) while investor John McBain increased his stake in Tinybeans (ASX:TNY).
Challenger did likewise with Australia Oil and Gas (ASX:ATS) and now holds 7.71 per cent. AustralianSuper bought $2m of Aurelia Metals (ASX:AMI) shares and holds 6.31 per cent.
IOOF increased its stakes in Alliance Aviation (ASX:AVQ), Baby Bunting (ASX:BBN), and Victory Offices (ASX:VIC), and became substantial holders in Redbubble (ASX:RBL).
We also noticed Anson Resources welcomed a major substantial holder. Shanghai industrial giant Chia Tai Xingye bought a 12.27 per cent stake. Anson’s boss Bruce Richardson previously called them “a very supportive strategic partner”.
But while these fund managers were buying, other investors took the opportunity to sell. The biggest seller was Lenark Pty Ltd, which sold its entire $12.8m shareholding in Atrum Coal. It turns out this company is directed by the wife of director James Chisholm. He now only has unlisted options.
Other sell-outs were Farjoy, the trust of barrister Timothy Robertson, which sold out of United Networks (ASX:UNL) and Acorn Capital, which sold out of Selfwealth (ASX:SWF).
Kingfisher Capital sold out of Galena Mining (ASX:G1A), having only bought in two and a half months ago.
Regal Funds Management ceased to be substantial holders in Getswift (ASX:GSW), but still holds 4.88 per cent. Regal also decreased its stake in Oncosil Medical (ASX:OSL) to 6.64 per cent.
AustralianSuper decreased its stake in gold miner Perseus Mining (ASX:PRU) to 5.07 per cent having sold $6.6m worth of shares. And finally, IOOF ceased to be holders in Dacian Gold – a $3m sale took IOOF to 4.43 per cent.