Hedge Funds

  • 25 Nov 2014 at 5:38 PM

“Cliff Asness Or Teenage Twitter Rant?”

Cliff Asness by Kieron Black
If you’re killing time at the office, working on Turkey Day, or are looking for a fun interactive game for the family to play Thursday night after dinner, test your knowledge of Asnessisms with this quiz brought to you by Hedge Fund Intelligence. Or simply appreciate the above rendering of Clifford in his bedroom, by HFI artist Kieron Black. [Hedge Fund Intelligence, related]

  • 25 Nov 2014 at 1:59 PM

Christmas Come Early At Casa De Falcone

Phil FalconePhil knew that this was more than just a threat. In all the years they’d been living together, he’d never seen her so mad, not even after she’d discovered he’d been hawking her vintage Hermes scarves for cash last summer. No, she’d really had it with him this time. It’d been more than three years since she’d been able hold her annual Christmas party, the social event of the season that people had done unspeakable things to score an invite to in the past and her patience had long since whittled down to that of a toothpick.

If she wasn’t able to throw it the way she liked– Swarovski-encrusted invitations, go-go dancers dressed as Romans flanking the pool room, ice sculptures done in the family’s likeness, individual raw-bars at dinner, a ‘Maids-a-Milking’ themed after hours– then she wasn’t going to throw it at all. Better to make ‘em wait and come back with a vengeance then serve up a watered down, less hot version of what she was capable of. So they’d agreed on a deadline: Christmas 2014. She’d started working on preliminary plans in August and, yet, as of last month, not one penny had been deposited into her ‘Travel and Entertainment’ fund.

She’d sent emails about it marked ‘high importance,’ pestered his secretary, and finally stormed his office earlier in the week, where she found him doing little more than raking sand back and forth on of those desk trays, rather than hustling to get the money together. She exploded then and she exploded this morning, following him to the front door of the townhouse in her robe and shouting in no uncertain terms that if he didn’t come home with the money that night, he needn’t come home at all. And, honestly? As of lunchtime he was trying to figure out if he had any buddies left who’d let him sleep on the couch, just for a night or two until he’d found something more permanent. And then he remembered something. Page 741 of his employment agreement. Not with Harbinger Capital Partners. Not with HC2. Not with LightSquared. But with the Harbinger Group. Read more »

Shhh, he didn't mean it.

Shhh, he didn’t mean it.

As those of you who keep up with the Life And Times of Steven A. Cohen know, there are few things on this earth that the hedge fund manager despises more than his first bride, Patricia Cohen. So despite the fact that she has been suing him nearly five years; is, in the words of his lawyer Martin Klotz, “harass[ing] and embarrass[ing] Steven,”; and, at this point, wants what represents approximately 1/900000th of his personal wealth, the SAC Capital founder continues to refuse to settle this thing privately and throw her a dime. While merely casual observers of the Big Guy assumed that Patty’s recent victory, wherein she “won permission as part of a 25-year-old divorce battle to question him about any lies he may have told related to wrongdoing at the hedge fund” would’ve gotten him to budge, SAC Scholars know better.

“It’s a bit of a head-scratcher,” said Anthony Sabino, a business law professor at St. John’s University in New York, who has followed the case. “He’s been pilloried in the press. You’d have to think he is sick and tired of that and would like to get out of the spotlight. It’s baffling why he just doesn’t say, ‘Here’s the money, why not leave us alone?’”

For the record, here are a list of things Steve Cohen would rather do than give his ex-wife satisfaction, monetary or otherwise: Read more »

  • 21 Nov 2014 at 4:30 PM

Deal Judge: We’re Going To Need A New Master of Coin

Elie's idea of an Icelandic prison.

Elie’s idea of an Icelandic prison.

Ed. note: This is a new weekly column by Elie Mystal, Managing Editor of Above the Law Redline, wrapping up the week that was in law and finance. Elie is not a practicing attorney, and anything he says that you listen to can and will be used against you.

Issue #1: How can you get a permit to do a damned illegal thing?

Bitcoins are a “real” commodity, so says the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. Commissioner Mark Wetjen “I do believe we have the authority because if you think of any reasonable reading of our statute, bitcoin classifies as a commodity, “I do believe we have the authority because if you think of any reasonable reading of our statute, bitcoin classifies as a commodity.”

Well maybe if Wetjen wishes really, really hard, Tinkerbell will spring to life and sprinkle enough regulatory pixie dust to give the CFTC the authority it believes it should have. Read more »

  • 21 Nov 2014 at 3:12 PM

Mathew Martoma Is In Miami

martomaUnfortunately, this is a business, not pleasure trip: yesterday marked Day 1 of 3,285 of his sentence for orchestrating the largest insider trading scheme ever. Read more »

Take it or leave it.At a sizeable discount, por favor. Read more »

point72 asset management Over the last several years, as nearly a dozen former SAC Capital employees have been convicted of securities violations, the firm has taken many steps to redefine its image, from one of a bastion of insider trading to one where such actions are not only frowned upon but strictly prohibited. Such steps include but are not limited to: paying over $1 billion in fines; changing its name; and turning itself into a family office. Last month, Point72 Asset Management, AKA the hedge fund formerly known as SAC, even went so far as to announce that it would be monetarily compensating employees for “setting a proper tone and example on compliance and doing the right thing.” You’d think that all of these things– including the fact that a whole bunch of ex-SAC employees are doing time– would go far to deter people currently working at the hedge fund from engaging in insider trading. And yet, someone in Stamford apparently thought it was necessary still to take away one final temptation from them. Read more »

Phil Falcone Isn’t Through With Charlie Ergen Yet!

Harbinger's latest filing.Phil Falcone is sticking with his narrative for a little debacle called LightSquared: First, GPS companies started using his spectrum without permission, and then said that if Phil started to use it to provide 4G all over this great country, it would be a great country littered with airline wrecks. This planted a seed in the twisted mind of the wickedest man in the whole wide world, Charlie Ergen, who is trying to buy the entire electromagnetic spectrum so that anyone with entertainment needs will have no choice but to come to him and his Dish Network empire. Now, being a man absent of moral fiber, Charlie Ergen thought nothing of buying up as much LightSquared debt as he could on the cheap, even though he more or less explicitly wasn’t allowed to. This “fraudulently deprived Harbinger of control of LightSquared when it was needed most,” so that Charlie and Dish could swoop in and buy the precious if not entirely usable spectrum for nothing. Which, whether you buy Phil’s story or are partial to Charlie’s “it was for my daughter’s college fund” angle, is pretty much what happened.

Long story short, as far as Phil is concerned, this means it is not his fault that Harbinger’s investors have taken a $2 billion bath on LightSquared. And he would very much appreciate it if a judge let him show who is at fault. Treble damages would also be nice. Read more »