Defying skeptics, i.e., the bears and the lion’s share of economists, the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite was up a huge 29% so far in 2023 as of the afternoon of June 27. But this is not the second half of 2020. In other words, the vast majority of tech stocks aren’t soaring. Instead, this is a true “stock-picker’s market,” as the stocks of companies that are succeeding and some of those with great potential are rallying while the names that are struggling are sinking. However, some of the tech stocks that are tumbling have tremendous potential and will be big winners down the road. So how should retail investors figure out which struggling tech stocks to sell and which to buy?
Determining which tech stocks large investors are selling can help you decide which names are going to keep tumbling and which will be tomorrow’s “comeback kids.” That’s because, as I noted in a previous column, “Institutional investors know more about…stocks, and which ones to avoid, than the public (in general). Therefore, it’s important to know which…stocks major investors are selling, and to avoid those names.”
Here are three tech stocks that many large investors sold last quarter. Partly for that reason, I view these three names as tech stocks to sell.
Metropolitan Life Insurance headed for the exits on Teladoc (NASDAQ:TDOC) as it unloaded all 3,013 of its shares of the telehealth company. Similarly, the Ontario Teachers Pension Plan Board sold all 12,662 of its shares of TDOC.
Also shutting the door on Teladoc was Rockefeller Capital Management, which got rid of all 6,143 of its shares of TDOC. Also noteworthy is that Jane Street, a trading company, sold 305,779 shares of TDOC, representing 80% of its holdings.
Meanwhile, Norges Bank, Norway’s central bank, sold all of its 1.46 million shares of TDOC, and investment adviser D.E. Shaw got rid of 42% of its company shares, as it sold 1.08 million shares. Another major player that sold TDOC stock was the Royal Bank of Canada, which shed 201,603 shares or 37% of its stake. Finally, the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board dropped all 83,200 of its shares of TDOC.
In past columns, I’ve been bearish on Teladoc’s outlook, citing the huge amount of competition the company faces and the low barriers to entry in the telehealth sector.
Metropolitan Life Insurance unloaded all 12,690 of its shares of Snowflake (NYSE:SNOW), which markets its “cloud-based data platform,” in the first quarter, according to Fintel. Australian investment bank Macquarie liquidated 32% of its stake in SNOW, or 44,679 shares, in Q1.
Additionally, investment bankLazard lowered its stake in the name by 52% or 10,369 shares, and Tiger Global Management, owned by well-known billionaire investor Chase Coleman III, slashed its stake by 27.4%, or 701,000 shares. Meanwhile, Norway’s central bank, known as Norges Bank, sold its entire stake of 3.3 million shares of SNOW stock last quarter.
SNOW stock remains overvalued, as its forward price-earnings ratio is a gargantuan 308x.
Point 72 Asset Management, the hedge fund owned by the well-respected, multibillionaire investor Steve Cohen, unloaded its entire stake in Coinbase (NASDAQ:COIN) last quarter, which consisted of 469 shares. Also heading for the exits was investment adviser D.E. Shaw, which unloaded its whole stake of 12,800 shares.
The California Public Employees Retirement System, better known as Calpers, slashed its stake in COIN by 16% as it unloaded 45,846 shares. Wells Fargo sold 33% of its stake in COIN or 5,896 shares, while British insurer Prudential slashed its stake in COIN by 31% or 3,345 shares.
As I explained in a previous column, the lawsuit against Coinbase by the SEC will likely cause its revenue to tumble a great deal in the longer term. Nevertheless, the shares are trading at an elevated, unjustified trailing price-sales ratio of 5, making COIN one of the top tech stocks to sell.
On the date of publication, Larry Ramer held a SHORT position in COIN. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.