david einhorn

The release of December returns for hedge funds continues with David Einhorn announcing the results for Greenlight Capital. The news is not particularly upbeat, as the fund lost 2.7 percent in December, bringing the year to date returns to 7.1 percent. The S&P 500 index rose 13.4 percent in the last calendar year. On the bright side, this is still better than 2011, when the fund managed only +2 percent overall. Taking the fourth quarter out of the picture, Greenlight Capital was up 12-13 percent in the three quarters of 2012.

The losses in the fourth quarter are not surprising when its noted that the fund’s largest long holding was in Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). Although Apple’s share price gained 31 percent overall in last year, it suffered a detraction of 20 percent in the fourth quarter. According to the Q3 SEC filing, Einhorn held 1.09 million shares in Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). Others who have lost in Apple include Dan Loeb of Third Point. The Apple position was in the list of top losers throughout Q4 2012.

Additionally,Vodafone Group Plc (NASDAQ:VOD) (LON:VOD), the fifth largest long holding of Greenlight, also lost 11.6 percent in the fourth quarter. In the short portfolio, the possibility for losing positions could be Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc. (NASDAQ:GMCR), which gained more than 74 percent in Q4. Greenlight also disclosed a short position in 4.43 percent of Daily Mail and General Trust plc (LON:DMGT) (LON:DMGO)’s shares outstanding. DMGT was up more than 14 percent in Q4. Elekta AB (STO:EKTA-B), Greenlight Capital’s short bet in Sweden also gained close to 17 percent in Q4, while FLSmidth & Co. A/S (CPH:FLS) short position in Denmark was almost flat in the quarter.

Greenlight’s winning investments could have been longs in CIGNA Corporation (NYSE:CI), General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) and shorts in Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. (NYSE:CMG). It seems that Einhorn still has faith in Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), the position continues to be the largest long in the fund’s portfolio.

H/T: Stephen Taub at Institutional Investor’s Alpha