, manager of the $150 million
Aberdeen Equity Long/Short Fund
, says the stock market has probably hit bottom, even though some investors are calling for a second-stage slide over the next several months.
He's investing in home-improvement chain
and computer maker
in anticipation of a rebound.
His fund, which has earned four stars from Morningstar, has lost 9.1% in the past year, outperforming the
index's 31% drop. Over the past three and five years, the fund has returned an average of 1.3% and 4.6% annually, beating the benchmark during both periods.
He offers his investment ideas in the
Fund Manager Five Spot
, where America's top mutual fund managers give their best stock picks in five fast and furious questions.
Are you a bull or bear?
We are bullish on the second half of 2009 and the first half of 2010 because we believe the economy has most likely bottomed and estimate revisions will be skewed positively from here on in. We see a lot of positives in the economy including: tightening credit spreads, improving housing turnover, better investment liquidity, improving commercial paper activity and improving Chinese economics.
What is your top stock pick?
At Aberdeen, we follow a bottom-up process based on a disciplined evaluation of companies through direct visits. We try to buy good companies with good management teams that we think can differentiate themselves through new products, distribution or management that are under-appreciated by the street in terms of valuation.
One stock we think fits this description very well is
, which has demonstrated better-than-expected exploration and production results. They also have significant exposure to the sizable Brazilian oil find.
We also like Lowe's, which we think has a low valuation and is positioned well for any uptick in spending after two years of cost cutting.
Finally, we think the recent uptick in global PC and printer sales will help Hewlett-Packard, especially since it's being supported by direct stimulus provided by the Chinese government and smaller notebook form factors.
What is your top beneath-the-radar or sleeper-stock pick?
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide
is a great sleeper stock because revisions for hotels will bottom in the second quarter. New debt terms and easier credit markets will also relieve leveraged portfolio concerns.
What is your favorite sector?
Our favorite sector is undoubtedly consumer discretionary due to revisions, early-cycle tendencies, low interest rates and low inventories to trend-line consumption statistics.
What sector or stock would you avoid?
We short companies with high valuations and questionable management teams that we think can't differentiate themselves and where competition is very high and earnings estimates are at risk. Right now, we are avoiding financial stocks because the balance sheets are still a mess and government intervention is only increasing.
Before joining TheStreet.com, Gregg Greenberg was a writer and segment producer for CNBC's Closing Bell. He previously worked at FleetBoston and Lehman Brothers in their Private Client Services divisions, covering high net-worth individuals and midsize hedge funds. Greenberg attended New York University's School of Business and Economic Reporting. He also has an M.B.A. from Cornell University's Johnson School of Business, and a B.A. in history from Amherst College.