Mastercard Inc (NYSE:MA) has been a popular pick among hedge funds during the third quarter, as the stock has witnessed an increase in hedge fund sentiment. As the latest round of 13F filings showed, MA was in 81 hedge funds’ equity portfolios at the end of September, as the data from Insider Monkey show. This represents a slight increase from 80 hedge funds, among those tracked by Insider Monkey, with stakes in Mastercard at the end of the second quarter. The company has attracted the interest of notorious investors such as Stephen Mandel and George Soros, among others.

Experts at hedge fund tracking site Insider Monkey have shown that, historically, those who follow the top picks of the elite money managers can beat their index-focused peers by a significant margin (see the details here). This is explained by the fact, that today there are many gauges that stock traders have at their disposal to analyze publicly traded companies. However, tracking the hedge fund activity and insider trading interest still remaind to be a sort of under-the-radar approach.

So, what’s been going on around Mastercard Inc (NYSE:MA) of late?

At the end of September, a total of 81 of the hedge funds tracked by Insider Monkey were long in this stock, as it has been already mentioned. This represents a change of 1% from one quarter earlier. With hedge funds’ positions going through their usual flow, there exists a select group of select hedge fund managers who were boosting their stakes significantly.

So, as Insider Monkey data show, Lone Pine Capital, managed by Stephen Mandel, is the largest shareholder of Mastercard Inc (NYSE:MA). Lone Pine Capital has a $1.12 billion position, comprising 4.4% of its 13F portfolio value. Coming in second is Viking Global, led by Andreas Halvorsen, with a $965.1 million stake and the fund has 3.9% of its 13F portfolio invested in the stock. Other hedge funds that are optimistic about Mastercard’s prospects include Tom Russo’s Gardner Russo & GardnerTiger Global Management LLC, a hedge fund managed by Feroz Dewan under Tiger Global, led by Chase Coleman, and John Armitage’s Egerton Capital Limited.

In this way, most heavyweighters show a significant bullish sentiment and many key money managers have jumped into Mastercard Inc (NYSE:MA) headfirst. According to Insider Monkey’s database, Laurion Capital Management, led by Benjamin A. Smith, created the biggest call position in Mastercard Inc (NYSE:MA) and has around $33.3 million invested in the company as of the end of the last quarter. Robert Pitts’s Steadfast Capital Management also initiated a $26.1 million position during the same period. The list goes on and includes names like George Soros’s Soros Fund Management, Siddharth Thacker’s Signpost Capital, and Clint Carlson’s Carlson Capital.

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