This article is part of a series that provides an ongoing analysis of the changes made to Kenneth Fisher’s 13F stock portfolio on a quarterly basis. It is based on Fisher Asset Management’s regulatory 13F Form filed on 04/20/2018. Please see our article "Tracking Kenneth Fisher's Fisher Asset Management Holdings" for an idea on his investment style and philosophy and our previous update highlighting the fund’s moves in Q4 2017.
This quarter, Fisher’s 13F portfolio value increased ~7%, from $76.56B to $81.96B. The number of holdings increased from 922 to 993. Significantly large positions decreased from 69 to 66. The five largest individual stock positions are Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN), Alibaba Group Holdings (NYSE:BABA), Visa Inc. (NYSE:V), Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing (NYSE:TSM). Together, they account for ~13% of the 13F stock portfolio.
To know more about Ken Fisher, check out his research papers (most notably in Behavioral Finance), investment books (several of them were NY Times best sellers) and his father Philip Fisher’s scuttlebutt investment philosophy explained in the book Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits and Other Writings.
Note: Fisher manages ~40,000 private client accounts and over 175 institutional accounts. Each such portfolio is personalized to client requirements, and beating the S&P is not the focus for many of them. "13F Portfolio performance," which would be the performance of the sum total of all such monies in 13F securities, is an unknown.
Amazon.com: AMZN is the largest individual stock position at 3.44% of the portfolio. The stake is from 2011, and the stock price has risen over seven-fold during the holding period: the cost basis is ~$200, compared to the current price of $1518. Q2 2016 saw a ~20% selling at prices between $586 and $728. There was another ~16% selling in Q2 2017 at prices between $885 and $1011. The last three quarters have seen a ~15% increase at prices between $935 and $1600.
Alibaba Group Holdings: BABA is a top-three position at 2.68% of the portfolio. The original position was from Q2 2015 at prices between $81 and $93. Q1 2017 saw a two-thirds increase at prices between $88 and $110. That was followed with a ~90% increase in Q2 2017 at prices between $107 and $144. The stock currently trades at $174. There was a ~12% stake increase over the last two quarters at prices between $165 and $205.
Visa Inc.: The V position was first purchased in 2012 at much lower prices compared to the current price of ~$127. The size of the stake has tripled in the past five years through incremental purchases almost every quarter. There was an ~8% stake increase this quarter as well. The position is now the third-largest stake at 2.59% of the portfolio.
Apple Inc.: AAPL is a top-five 2.53% individual stock position that was built up in 2012 at prices between $60 and $72. The original stake was increased by ~60% in Q2 2013 at prices between $59 and $65. There was a ~9% trimming in Q2 2017 at prices between $141 and $156. The stock currently trades at $164. The last three quarters saw a combined ~17% increase at prices between $143 and $182.
Taiwan Semiconductor: TSM is a very long-term 2.12% of the 13F portfolio position. A large block was purchased in 2012 at prices between $12.50 and $16.50. The stake was reduced by ~50% in Q2 2013 at prices between $17 and $20. The nine quarters through Q2 2016 saw the position rebuilt (70% increase) at prices between $19 and $26. Q2 2017 also saw a ~22% increase at prices between $31.50 and $36.92. The stock currently trades at $38.17. There was a ~17% further increase this quarter at prices between $40 and $45.
Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT): MSFT is a fairly large ~2% of the portfolio position. It is a very long-term stake that has been in the portfolio for well over a decade. The last major activity was a ~14% trimming in Q2 2017 at prices between $65 and $73. The stock is now at ~$94. The last three quarters have seen a combined ~16% increase at prices between $68 and $97.
Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ): JNJ is a ~2% of the portfolio position. Around two-thirds of the stake was purchased in 2008 at prices between $55 and $72, and most of the rest in 2011 at prices between $58 and $68. The stock currently trades at $128. There was a ~12% stake increase this quarter.
Alphabet Inc. (GOOG, GOOGL): GOOG was a very small position that was built up to a substantial 2% stake in 2011 at prices between $242 and $301. The stock has almost quadrupled and currently trades at $1040. The position stands at 1.88% of the portfolio. There was a ~14% reduction in Q2 2017 at prices between $823 and $984. This quarter saw an ~11% stake increase at prices between $1000 and $1176.
Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE): PFE is a very long-term 1.72% position that has been in the portfolio for well over a decade. The original stake was almost sold out in the 2009-10 time frame and was rebuilt in the next two years at prices between $17.50 and $25. The stock is currently at $36.85. There was a ~9% stake increase this quarter.
Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC): The bulk of the 1.52% portfolio stake in INTC was built in 2008 in the high teens. The position has seen consistent incremental buying since 2013. There was a ~10% stake increase this quarter at prices between $42.50 and $52.50, and the stock is at $53.05.
Tencent Holdings ADR (OTCPK:TCEHY): The ~1.2% TCEHY stake was mostly purchased in Q2 2017. The quarter saw a 13.5M share purchase at prices between $29 and $37. The stock is now at $49.44. The last three quarters have also seen incremental purchases. The current position is at ~18.5M shares.
Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT): The bulk of the ~1% WMT position was purchased in Q2 2016 at prices between $65 and $73. Last quarter saw a ~45% stake increase at prices between $78 and $100, and that was followed with a ~12% increase this quarter. The stock is now at $87.94. The buying pattern indicates a bullish bias.
Home Depot (NYSE:HD): HD is a ~1% of the 13F portfolio position first purchased in 2012 at prices between $42 and $65. The three quarters through Q1 2017 had seen minor increases. There was an about-turn in Q2 2017: a ~38% selling at prices between $146 and $159. Last quarter saw another ~28% reduction at prices between $150 and $190. There was another reversal this quarter: a ~14% stake increase at prices between $172 and $207. The stock is now at ~$186.
UBS AG GRS (NYSE:UBS): UBS is a ~1% of the 13F portfolio position established in Q3 2013 at prices between $17 and $21.50. The original stake was reduced by around one-third in Q4 2013 at prices between $19 and $22. Q1 2014 saw an about-turn, as the position was increased by ~37% at prices between $18.50 and $21.50, and the following quarter saw an additional 47% stake increase at prices between $18 and $21.50. In Q4 2014, the pattern reversed, as the position was reduced by ~40%. The last three years have seen a two-thirds stake increase at prices between $12.25 and $23. The stock currently trades at $16.91. For investors attempting to follow Fisher, UBS is a good option to consider for further research.
Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG): PG is another long-term ~1% of the 13F portfolio position that has been in the portfolio since before the financial crisis. The original position was increased by just over 75% in 2012 at prices between $60 and $70. There has since been a ~25% further increase through periodic buying. The stock currently trades at $72.75.
Anheuser-Busch InBev SA ADR (NYSE:BUD), ASML Holding (NASDAQ:ASML), AstraZeneca plc (NYSE:AZN), BASF SE ADR (OTCQX:BASFY), Baidu Inc. (NASDAQ:BIDU), Banco Bradesco (NYSE:BBD), Banco Santander SA ADR (NYSE:SAN), BNP Paribas ADR (OTCQX:BNPQY), Bayer AG ADR (OTCPK:BAYRY), Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.B), Chevron Inc. (NYSE:CVX), Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO), Costco Wholesale (NASDAQ:COST), Ctrip.com International ADR (NASDAQ:CTRP), Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM), General Electric (NYSE:GE), GlaxoSmithKline plc ADR (NYSE:GSK), HSBC plc (NYSE:HSBC), ING Groep NV ADR (NYSE:ING), Infosys Inc. (NASDAQ:INFY), Intesa Sanpaolo S.p.A. ADR (OTCPK:ISNPY), Itau Unibanco (NYSE:ITUB), JD.com (NASDAQ:JD), JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM), L'Oreal Co. ADR (OTCPK:LRLCY), LVMH-Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton ADR (OTCPK:LVMUY), Merck Inc. (NYSE:MRK), Novartis AG ADR (NYSE:NVS), Novo Nordisk A/S ADR (NYSE:NVO), Oracle Corporation (NYSE:ORCL), PepsiCo Inc. (NYSE:PEP), Roche Holding Limited ADR (OTCQX:RHHBY), Sanofi ADR (NYSE:SNY), SAP AG ADR (NYSE:SAP), Siemens AG (OTCPK:SIEGY), SoftBank Group ADR (OTCPK:SFTBY), Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group (NYSE:SMFG), United Technologies (NYSE:UTX), and Vodafone plc (NASDAQ:VOD): These very small positions (less than ~1% of the 13F portfolio) that saw minor increases this quarter.
American Express (NYSE:AXP): AXP has been in the portfolio since 2012. The original position was around 9M shares, and the current stake is 10.2M shares. Q3 2016 saw a ~10% reduction at prices between $59 and $66, and the stock is now at ~$100. There was a ~14% sale this quarter at prices between $88 and $102, and the stake is now at 1.16% of the portfolio.
The portfolio has several positions in different ETNs and ETFs, and they account for around 15% of the 13F portfolio. Fisher also had large stakes in the following businesses per the latest 13G filings: Stratasys Ltd. (NASDAQ:SSYS) - 6%, Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings (NASDAQ:AAWW) - 4.4%, Wright Medical Group (NASDAQ:WMGI) – 5.6%, and Veeco Instruments (NASDAQ:VECO) - 3.1%.
Below are positions sized in the 0.1% to 0.5% range in the portfolio: ABB Ltd (NYSE:ABB), AbbVie Inc. (NYSE:ABBV), Advanced Semiconductor Engineering Ltd. (NYSE:ASX), Ambev - Companhia de Bebidas das Americas (NYSE:ABEV), America Movil (NYSE:AMX), Aspen Technology (NASDAQ:AZPN), Banco Bilbao Vizcaya (NYSE:BBVA), Barclays plc (NYSE:BCS), Beacon Roofing (NASDAQ:BECN), BlackRock Inc. (NYSE:BLK), Boeing Company (NYSE:BA), Capital One Financial Corp. (NYSE:COF), Cavium Inc. (CAVM), Chemed Corp. (NYSE:CHE), Comcast Corp. (NASDAQ:CMCSA), Compagnie Financiere Richemont AG ADR (OTCPK:CFRUY), CoreLogic Inc. (NYSE:CLGX), Credit Agricole SA ADR (OTCPK:CRARY), Daimler AG (OTCPK:DDAIF), Deutsche Post (OTCPK:DPSGY), Walt Disney (NYSE:DIS), Dr. Reddy's Labs (NYSE:RDY), Domino's Pizza (NYSE:DPZ), E*Trade Financial (NASDAQ:ETFC), East West Bancorp (NASDAQ:EWBC), Fanuc Corp. (OTCPK:FANUF), First American Financial Corp. (NYSE:FAF), Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS), Grupo Televisa SA (NYSE:TV), HEICO Corp. (NYSE:HEI), Hill-Rom Holdings (NYSE:HRC), ICICI Bank (NYSE:IBN), Ingredion, Inc. (NYSE:INGR), Kansas City Southern (NYSE:KSU), KB Home (NYSE:KBH), Lennar Corp. (NYSE:LEN), Eli Lilly (NYSE:LLY), Lincoln Electric Holdings (NASDAQ:LECO), Littelfuse Inc. (NASDAQ:LFUS), MKS Instruments (NASDAQ:MKSI), Mastercard Inc. (NYSE:MA), Meritage Homes (NYSE:MTH), Mitsubishi Electric (OTCPK:MIELY), Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS), Nestle (OTCPK:NSRGY), NetEase Inc. (NASDAQ:NTES), NetScout (NASDAQ:NTCT), PacWest Bancorp (NASDAQ:PACW), Pegasystems Inc. (NASDAQ:PEGA), Petroleo Brasileiro (NYSE:PBR), Pool Corp. (NASDAQ:POOL), Qorvo Inc. (NASDAQ:QRVO), Raymond James Financial (NYSE:RJF), Reckitt Benckiser (OTCPK:RBGLY), Royal Dutch Shell plc (NYSE:RDS.A), SMC Corp Japan (OTCPK:SMCAY), SVB Financial (NASDAQ:SIVB), Samsung Electronics (OTC:SSNLF), Schneider Electric SE ADR (OTCPK:SBGSY), The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (NYSE:SMG), Select Medical Holdings Corp. (NYSE:SEM), Smith & Nephew plc (NYSE:SNN), Societe Generale France (OTCPK:SCGLY), Stifel Financial (NYSE:SF), Tata Motors (NYSE:TTM), Tokyo Electronics (OTCPK:TOELY), Toro Company (NYSE:TTC), Umpqua Holdings (NASDAQ:UMPQ), Unilever NV (NYSE:UN), Verint Systems (NASDAQ:VRNT), Vinci SA (OTCPK:VCISY), Vishay Intertechnology (NYSE:VSH), West Pharmaceutical (NYSE:WST), Wintrust Financial Corp. (NASDAQ:WTFC), Yaskawa Electric (OTCPK:YASKY), Yelp Inc. (NYSE:YELP), SK Hynix (OTC:HXSCF), Credicorp Ltd. (NYSE:BAP), Lazard Ltd. (NYSE:LAZ), and Steris Corp. (NYSE:STE).
Note: The overall portfolio had seen a significant shift toward European equities in Q2 2017, and that theme has continued since.
The spreadsheet below highlights changes to Fisher’s US stock holdings (only positions that are over 0.5% of the 13F portfolio each are individually listed) in Q1 2018:
Disclosure: I am/we are long BABA, INTC, AZN, GE, SFTBY. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.
Editor's Note: This article discusses one or more securities that do not trade on a major U.S. exchange. Please be aware of the risks associated with these stocks.