Leon Cooperman of Omega Advisors, Fortress Investment Group’s Michael Novogratz and Glenview Capital Management’s Larry Robbins, discussed their top investment ideas for 2014 at least week’s Delivering Alpha Conference in New York City.
While Michael Novogratz talked of “secular stagnation, ” he thinks the Japan trade on Abenomics is viable, and commented that the Japanese are starting to believe in their own stock market. He also is bullish on Brazil, Argentina and India. “Brazil is so bad, it’s good, ” he said, and is confident that Argentina’s government will change hands and usher in economic improvement.
Leon Cooperman pointed out that while nine of his ten picks from last year’s conference rose, “I’m not as optimistic about my list this year.” His “buy” list for 2014 includes: Actavis, Citigroup, Thermo Fischer Scientific, Atlas Energy, Gaming and Leisure Properties, KKR, Nordic American, QEP Resources, Supervalu Inc., Louis XIII Holdings, Monitise Plc and Sandridge Energy. Cooperman wouldn’t comment on social media or biotech, but said he is bullish on financials; he is long AIG, JPMorgan and Citigroup, and thinks this sector is “one of the cheaper groups in the market.” When asked about his bullishness on stocks, he responded; “When was the last time I was bearish? I think about the time I was bar mitzvah-ed.” In conclusion, Cooperman said, “We’ve past pessimism, we’ve past skepticism. I think we’re in the stage of optimism. But I don’t think we’re in euphoria.”
Larry Robbins, formerly of Omega, said, “Corporates should lever up, ” and added investing in this area is like playing poker with an opponent’s cards face up.”You should think about putting some chips on the table there.” He thinks Monsanto should continue growing at double-digits, and also recommended Thermo Fisher Scientific, Flextronics Int’l, Hertz, National-Oilwell Varco, HCA Holdings. Hertz should benefit from a spinoff of its car-rental and rental-equipment segments, and thinks Hertz’s management will soon buy back stock. He believes Thermo Fisher Scientific will go the way of Hertz by selling off businesses and buying back stock.