Andreas Halvorsen's Viking Global Reveals Short Position in KBC Groep NV (KBC) ~ market folly

Friday, December 3, 2010

Andreas Halvorsen's Viking Global Reveals Short Position in KBC Groep NV (KBC)

Andreas Halvorsen's hedge fund Viking Global Investors just disclosed a short position in overseas markets. Viking has revealed they are short 0.38% of the shares outstanding in the KBC Groep NV (KBC). This disclosure seems to fall under the new regulatory rules regarding revelations of positions in financials in foreign markets.

Even as the financial crisis has begun to recess from a state of panic, it's interesting to see various hedge funds still pop up with short positions in certain financial companies. Paul Ruddock's hedge fund Lansdowne Partners had been short Aviva (AV) and Crispin Odey's firm Odey Asset Management disclosed a new short position in Provident Financial (PFG).

Now, this is not to say that these hedge funds aren't shorting American-based financials as well. The short selling disclosures in the UK and foreign markets require transparency regarding these stakes while funds are not required to reveal short positions publicly in US-based companies.

Regarding other position activity out of Viking, we highlighted their new position in Guess (GES) back in late August as well.

Per Google Finance, KBC Groep NV is "a Belgium-based company engaged in banking, insurance and wealth management for private banking clients, retail customers and medium-sized enterprises. It has expertise in asset management and the financial markets. The Company’s activity is composed of five divisions: the Belgium, the Central & Eastern Europe and Russia (CEER), the Merchant Banking, the European Private Banking, and the Shared Services & Operations business units."

You can see Viking Global's portfolio here.

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