March 13, 2018 / 10:33 PM / in 3 months

Ackman's Pershing Square trims ADP stake as bet grew in value: filing

BOSTON (Reuters) - Billionaire investor William Ackman’s hedge fund sold a stake in Automatic Data Processing, the firm’s biggest holding, as the value of the investment grew over the last months, a regulatory filing released on Tuesday shows.

FILE PHOTO - William 'Bill' Ackman, CEO and Portfolio Manager of Pershing Square Capital Management, speaks during the Sohn Investment Conference in New York City, U.S., May 8, 2017. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Pershing Square Holdings now has a 7.2 percent economic stake in the human resources outsourcing company, down from 8.3 percent previously. The $8.5 billion hedge fund now owns 7.9 million shares of common stock and 23.9 million shares underlying listed and over-the-counter American-style call options, the filing shows.

Ackman made the move for “portfolio management purposes,” the filing said. Pershing Square bought ADP shares for an average price of $105 in 2017. On Tuesday the shares closed trading at $117.39.

The widely followed activist investor last year lost a battle to win three ADP board seats when investors reelected company’s entire board.

Reporting by Svea Herbst-Bayliss; Editing by James Dalgleish

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