* Kraft in top 5 positions at end of July
* Third Point flagship rose 1.6 pct last month
By Katya Wachtel
NEW YORK, Aug 2 Hedge fund manager Daniel Loeb
made a big wager on Kraft Foods in July, telling
investors in his $8.7 billion firm that a stake in the food
maker is now one of the firm's largest positions.
Loeb's Third Point listed Kraft as its fifth largest
position as of July 31 in a monthly investor report obtained by
The note does not indicate whether Loeb has a net long
position or a short position in Kraft. If an investor is long,
he expects the share price to rise; a short position indicates
he expects the stock price to fall.
Third Point did not immediately return a request for
Kraft, set to split into two separate companies in the next
several months, replaced embattled natural gas producer
Chesapeake Energy Corp as one of Third Point's top
In June, Loeb revealed he had amassed a major position in
the energy company, but one month later it has slipped out of
the top five. Sources told Reuters that Third Point held a
position in Chesapeake bonds, and one source said the position
The New York-based hedge fund did not own common stock in
Kraft in the first quarter, according to a regulatory filing
called a 13F, in which hedge funds disclose long equity holdings
in given quarter. Those filings do not show a fund's short
positions, and reveal very little in the way of bonds and other
securities holdings that don't trade on exchanges.
Kraft Foods is expected to complete a split at the end of
this year that will see a separation of its snack foods
business, which is growing fast in emerging markets, from its
slower-growing general grocery business.
Loeb joins other titan investors who have seen value in the
Northfield, Illinois-based food maker. Warren Buffett's
Berkshire Hathaway, William Ackman's Pershing Square and Nelson
Peltz's Trian Fund Management have all owned large chunks of
Ackman significantly reduced Pershing's investment in Kraft
in the first quarter, slashing the stake by about 27 percent
according to a regulatory filing. As of March 31, Pershing owned
about 15.5 million shares. Ackman had pushed the company to
split since buying up shares in 2010.
Kraft shares closed at $38.94 Thursday, down 1.14 percent.
In after-hours trading the stock rose 0.67 percent to $39.20.
In addition to Kraft, Third Point's other top holdings at
the end of July include Yahoo, gold, Apple and Delphi Auto.
Loeb's flagship Third Point Offshore fund gained 1.6 percent
in July, boosting yearly returns to 5.5 percent. The broader
stock market gained 1.4 percent last month, and was up 11
percent through July 31.