Are SUPERVALU’s Top Institutional Investors Betting on an Earnings Upside Surprise?

SUPERVALU (NYSE:SVU) shares have taken quite a beating in 2012. The supermarket chain’s stock price is down over 34% so far this year. SUPERVALU is set to release earnings on Tuesday morning, April 10th. The average analyst estimate is for net income of 35 cents per share, a decline of 20.5% from the company’s actual earnings for the year-ago quarter. Today, the stock is up almost 4%. Are SUPERVALU’s top institutional investors betting on an earnings release rebound tomorrow?

277 institutional firms indicated owning shares of SUPERVALU Inc. (NYSE:SVU) in both Q3 2011 and Q4 2011. These firms reported owning a total of 192.529 million shares on 09/30/2011 and 207.353 million shares on 12/31/2011. The shares closed at $6.49 on 09/30/2011 and $8.01 on 12/31/2011, for an aggregate market value of $1.25 billion and $1.661 billion, respectively.

SUPERVALU Earnings Sneak Peek>>

Here are the ten largest positions in SUPERVALU Inc. at the end of December 31st, 2011.

FMR LLC held 15,060,188 shares on 09/30/2011 which were worth $97,740,620. On 12/31/2011 the firm held 14,922,240 shares worth $119,527,142. This represented a reduction of 137,948 shares or $21,786,522.

VANGUARD GROUP INC held 12,548,369 shares on 09/30/2011 which were worth $81,438,915. On 12/31/2011 the firm held 14,771,689 shares worth $118,321,229. This represented an increase of 2,223,320 shares or $36,882,314.

STATE STREET CORP held 13,903,920 shares on 09/30/2011 which were worth $90,236,441. On 12/31/2011 the firm held 13,963,544 shares worth $111,847,987. This represented an increase of 59,624 shares or $21,611,547.

LSV ASSET MANAGEMENT held 10,997,564 shares on 09/30/2011 which were worth $71,374,190. On 12/31/2011 the firm held 10,897,054 shares worth $87,285,403. This represented a reduction of 100,510 shares or $15,911,212.

GLOBAL THEMATIC PARTNERS LLC held 9,686,604 shares on 09/30/2011 which were worth $62,866,060. On 12/31/2011 the firm held 10,031,226 shares worth $80,350,120. This represented an increase of 344,622 shares or $17,484,060.

DIMENSIONAL FUND ADVISORS LP held 6,630,917 shares on 09/30/2011 which were worth $43,034,651. On 12/31/2011 the firm held 8,524,078 shares worth $68,277,865. This represented an increase of 1,893,161 shares or $25,243,213.

BANK OF NEW YORK MELLON CORP held 6,335,158 shares on 09/30/2011 which were worth $41,115,175. On 12/31/2011 the firm held 7,059,062 shares worth $56,543,087. This represented an increase of 723,904 shares or $15,427,911.

GW CAPITAL INC held 5,985,643 shares on 09/30/2011 which were worth $38,846,823. On 12/31/2011 the firm held 6,106,702 shares worth $48,914,683. This represented an increase of 121,059 shares or $10,067,860.

ELM RIDGE MANAGEMENT LLC held 4,658,704 shares on 09/30/2011 which were worth $30,234,989. On 12/31/2011 the firm held 6,084,404 shares worth $48,736,076. This represented an increase of 1,425,700 shares or $18,501,087.

BLACKROCK INSTITUTIONAL TRUST COMPANY N.A. held 5,283,514 shares on 09/30/2011 which were worth $34,290,006. On 12/31/2011 the firm held 5,714,082 shares worth $45,769,797. This represented an increase of 430,568 shares or $11,479,791.

About the company: SUPERVALU Inc. operates a chain of supermarkets and pharmacies primarily in the United States. The Company also provides supply chain services, which includes wholesale distribution and related logistics support services.

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