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Manager League Tables

Introducing: Novus manager league tables, a new dashboard series designed to categorize and rank public manager data based on SEC 13F filings.

Levi Branstetter
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From the hardwood to the baseball diamond, fans and commentators have always loved ranking sports teams ever since they started taking the field.

With the spring just getting kicked off here in NYC, the hometown Bronx Bombers have been off to a bit of a slow start, but will be looking to climb in the rankings (Figure 1).

Figure 1 - Current AL East MLB Standings

Unlike the baseball season, which runs from April to October, the investing season is a year-round affair where the best and the brightest gather to stake their claim as the highest-performing money manager. 

Within the craft of investing, some managers are most active in specific industries, and others demonstrate a unique strategy in their position selections. These characteristics provide a classification taxonomy to sort managers by, and also prove as a useful sourcing tool for allocators.

Here at Novus, we are excited to introduce Novus league tables, a free dashboard series designed to categorize and rank publicly reported manager data.

Follow along and derive your own insights on the Manager League Tables dashboards.

About the Data

The underlying data used to create league table rankings is publicly available through SEC 13F filings. Each quarter, the SEC requires any institution managing over $100m in assets to disclose their positions. With each new batch, the Novus team reexamines and updates the data to gather more insights into the world of institutional investing. This process includes parsing the list to filter exclusively on hedge fund investment vehicles and remove funds that are no longer actively filing 13Fs. 

To rank managers, we simulate the price movement of the securities intra-period to produce a return stream. Next, we curate the list of public institutions to contain hedge funds exclusively. Finally, we categorized the managers according to style. The result is four dashboards, which are explorable for free—one for specialization, one for strategy, and two for families.

Our dashboards feature two tables per Novus League. The Fund Profiles table includes AUM, Fund Growth, and Position Count. The 3 Yr Alpha Rankings tables are ranked by performance.

Click the link below to explore these dashboards.

Specialization Dashboard

The Specialization category refers to the observed behaviors of a particular fund based on the 13F data. When more than 50% of a manager's portfolio falls into a specific sector, geography, or strategy, Novus assigns a specialization.

Praesidium Investment Management Company, for example, as of December 2020 had a publicly reported 62% exposure to Information Technology, and is therefore listed in our IT specialist group.

Figure 2 - Specialization League Table: Information Technology Group (Dashboard)

As you'll see on the dashboard, the Healthcare group is currently our largest specialization. Within this specialization, the manager with the highest annualized alpha over the last three-year period has been Parkman Healthcare Partners. 

The Stamford, CT-based Parkman first started reporting in January 2020 and has posted great performance ever since. The fund was founded by a group of former Millennium Management alumni who worked together on the healthcare subsector before spinning off into their own fund. 

The fund has focused on small- to mid-cap names in the space and was a big winner in Aclaris Therapeutics, which saw rapid price appreciation after releasing phase 2 clinical results on their ATI-450 MKO2 inhibitor, which is being evaluated in treating moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis. 

See all Specialization Groups on the full Manager League Tables dashboard.

Strategy Dashboard

Managers also can demonstrate adherence to a specific investment philosophy outside what a 13F reveals directly. Novus Strategy groups are built using qualitative research to piece together publicly available information in order to understand the the strategy of an institution. Strategy can be self declared or gleaned from third-party providers.

Some groupings in this class are more straightforward, such as the Activist group, which filters on managers filing two or more 13Ds within the same year. Activists are managers who try to directly influence the underlying investment by changing the leadership, providing public guidance, etc.

AREX Capital, founded by Andrew Rechtschaffen (former partner at Greenlight), has topped the leaderboard for Activists in the last three years with strong performance across multiple names. The fund profiles as a concentrated manager, with nine positions currently being reported. 

Figure 3 - Strategy League Table: Activist Group (Dashboard)

Some strategies are more reliant on publicly available information on the funds, such as the Merger Arbitrage group, which relies on the fund identifying themselves as such. Other strategies in include Market Neutral, Fixed Income, Short Bias, and Equity Long-Short. The Equity Long-Short group is the largest, coming in at 651 managers.

See all Strategy Groups on the full Manager League Tables dashboard.

Family  Dashboards

The Family category can be thought of as a traditional family tree, but instead of using genetics, we connected portfolio managers to each other through a common point in their work history.

The most well-known example is probably the Tiger Family. Julian Robertson at Tiger Management has helped launch dozens of other hedge funds, leading to a large and extended family tree. Philippe Laffont at Coatue Management is a prominent alumnus who started working at Tiger Management in 1996 as a research analyst, focusing on telecommunications stocks before starting his own hedge fund in 1999. A common family lineage then links Coatue and Tiger Management in the Novus system.  

For more about how the Tiger Cubs are performing, check out our Tiger Cubs Dashboard.

Goldman Sachs is the biggest Family group on Novus, beating out the other large families of SAC and Tiger Management. Among the Goldman family, Christian Leone's Luxor Capital has been the top performer.

Figure 4 - Family League Table: Goldman Sachs Family (Dashboard)

Described as an opportunistic, event-oriented, and credit-focused firm, Luxor has a very international profile, highlighted by their most successful recent investment in the Berlin-based Delivery Hero.

See all Families on the full Manager League Tables dashboard.

Have an idea for a group or classification you didn’t see in a Novus classification? 

Novus clients subscribed to the public data module can create their own groups of public managers and rank them by any of the hundreds of metrics offered on the platform, such as crowdedness, uniqueness, or P/E ratio.

If needed, reach out to your client analytics team member for assistance in getting this set up.

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