Jeff Schachter, high yield portfolio manager and principal at Cedarview Capital, is looking for opportunities in the distressed market, trolling for credits that have been too heavily sold off. "Right now, we are looking for opportunities where people may have oversold a certain situation and they may be panicking," he said. "We are looking to take advantage of these peoples' fears." He noted MovieGallery, which came out at par and is now at 80, as one such example.
"We see a lot of volatility in the market right now and are trying to find value within the market context," he added. Schachter has been looking at several sectors. He said he believes the best areas of distressed investing include the auto sector, with names such as General Motors, Ford Motor and Delphi; the packaging sector, and the wireless sector. In wireless, Schachter specifically points to Charter as name in which he sees value. "The auto sector is a new distressed opportunity this year and we definitely looking into it," he said.
One of the situations that Schachter is currently monitoring is that of the theater industry. "Movie theaters have been oversold due to a weak box office, especially from the summer movies. People are shorting them and this may be the time to buy," Schachter said. He pointed to AMC Theaters and Carmike Cinemas as two specific names that bear watching.
Schachter refers to his firm as a "real, true hedge fund. We're about 150% long and 50-60% short" he explained. His portfolio comprises $250 million in positions and $120 million in capital. As he also invests in roughly 30% loans, Schachter utilizes several indexes including Credit Suisse First Boston's leveraged loan index as well as high yield indexes from Bear Stearns and Merrill Lynch. Across his portfolio, his net duration is under two years.