Oil Hedge Funds Struggling

Some of the biggest commodity hedge funds are shutting down despite a rally in raw materials during the past year, according to a recent article in The Wall Street Journal.   In 2017, the article reports, “closures of commodities hedge funds outnumbered launches for the first time in data going back to 2000 ” (data from Eurekahedge) and the trend has continued this year. Fund managers and traders say it’s happening because “investors who were… Read More

Hedge Fund Managers See Crisis Brewing

A recent Bloomberg article reports that there is a growing contingent of hedge fund managers who see market chaos on the horizon. The article reports that in May, billionaire George Soros “warned of a looming financial crisis and an existential threat to the European Union.”   But betting on a crash has been a “painful strategy for years as central banks across the globe bought assets to prop up markets,” the article says, offering a… Read More

Trouble for Quant Hedge Funds

The rise in market volatility has resulted in poor results for many quant funds, according to a recent Bloomberg article that says, “They were caught flat-footed in February when markets turned turbulent on concern over rising interest rates, followed by trade wars with China and the election in Italy.” The article reports that Renaissance Technologies, the world’s most profitable hedge fund, is trailing its benchmark in one fund this year (through mid-June) and that Jaffray Woodriff,… Read More

Hedge Funds Share Best Ideas Before Dumping Stocks

A recent article in Bloomberg discusses the tendency for hedge funds to pitch their best investment ideas at investor conferences, only to then “sell pitched stocks after the conferences to take profit and create room for better investment opportunities.” The article reports that a new study by Harvard doctoral student Patrick Luo (in which he reviewed nearly 30 investment conferences that took place between 2008 to 2013) shows that “on average, a hedge fund manager… Read More

The Tarnishing of David Einhorn

A recent article in Institutional Investor chronicles the fall-from-grace of hedge fund legend David Einhorn, billionaire founder of Greenlight Capital. “It takes a certain amount of self-confidence to think you’re smarter than everyone else,” the article says. “That’s especially the case when the markets are telling you something else—as has been the case for a decade with [David] Einhorn.” It describes Greenlight’s 14.9% loss through April– compared to a 0.4% loss for the S&P 500—as… Read More

Institutional Investor’s Rich List

In May, Institutional Investor published its “Rich List” of the world’s 25 highest-earning hedge funds– which, it reports, earned a total of $15.38 billion (approximately $615 million each). In order to make the list, a firm had to earn at least $225 million (compared to $130 million in 2016). “This is an increase of nearly 40 percent from 2016,” the article says, “a year when the top 25 collectively earned the lowest amount since 2008.”… Read More

A New Generation of Hedge Funds

Ralph Arndt, CIO of Australia’s Future Fund, an A$166 billion ($125.3 billion) sovereign wealth fund, sees hedge fund investment as a “necessary tool to help reduce risk while providing uncorrelated returns,” according to a recent article in Chief Investment Officer. Arndt has so much faith in his strategy, the article reports, that he has more than 15% of the portfolio in hedge funds, exposure which he says serves to reduce risk, “and in particular to… Read More

A Change in Hedge-Fund Fee Structure is Afoot

In a recent Bloomberg article, columnist Barry Ritholtz underscores his long-standing criticism of the traditional “2 and 20” hedge-fund industry fee structure as “expensive and unnecessary.” Expensive, Ritholtz writes, “because one can capture market-average returns, or beta, for a few basis points in fees in a low-cost mutual fund or exchange-traded fund; and unnecessary because investors are paying a 20 percent surcharge for beta rather than outperformance, or alpha.” Ritholtz points out the “puzzling” fact… Read More

Hedge Fund Stars Losing Shine, But the Industry is Fine

Despite the fact that hedge funds have “fallen on hard times”, writes columnist Nir Kaissar in a recent Bloomberg article, “don’t shed a tear for the industry just yet.” The article reports that, although the industry hasn’t kept pace with the broader market in recent years (citing Alan Fournier’s Pennant Capital Management and David Einhorn’s Greenlight Capital as examples), on the whole it has performed better than some of the “star” managers–the HFRI Fund Weighted… Read More

Short-Seller John Hempton Taunts Ackman

An article in The Sydney Morning Herald offers a profile on Australian hedge fund manager and “fraud-hunting short seller” John Hempton, a self-described eccentric who, while known mostly for his short bets, says he makes his real profits from long-term stock picking. The article reports that Hempton’s firm, Bronte Capital Management, “has bet profitably against Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. and made money on a stake in Herbalife Ltd., both of which pit him against Ackman.”… Read More