hedge fund managers

After months of fighting the government’s insider trading case tooth and nail, the hedge fund SAC Capital Advisors is leaning toward admitting criminal wrongdoing and agreeing to pay a record financial penalty to resolve the charges, according to two people briefed on the deliberations…In agreeing to have SAC plead guilty and pay the hefty fine, SAC’s owner, Steven A. Cohen, would be seeking to put his legal woes behind him in the hopes of salvaging his business. Once he resolved the government’s case, Mr. Cohen would look to transform SAC into a “family office” that would manage Mr. Cohen’s own wealth. [Dealbook, earlier]

Hedge fund manager John Paulson, known for huge gains followed by heavy losses in some of his funds, extended his portfolios’ winning streak in September, leaving all of them with double-digit gains for the year, a person familiar with the numbers said on Monday…Paulson told investors that his Recovery Fund gained 4.2 percent in September and is up 37.8 percent for the year, while the Paulson Enhanced fund gained 3.1 percent and is up 25.6 percent for the year, the source said. Even his Advantage Funds, the firm’s biggest before suffering heavy losses in 2011 and 2012, were up: The Advantage Fund gained 0.9 percent to be up 11 percent for the year, while the Advantage Plus Fund gained 1.2 percent and is up 15.8 percent. [Reuters]

Andrew Ross Sorkin: Your short position on Herbalife — you’re betting against the company — has caused some friends like George Soros and Daniel Loeb to turn on you. Bill Ackman: Neither of the people you mentioned is, or has ever been, a close friend of mine. I certainly know the people you mentioned — but, look, you need a thick skin to be in this business. In a short sale, the whole world is going to be on the other side of the investment until they realize you’re right. [NYT, earlier]

In person, the FT reports, he’s a sweetheart. Read more »

  • 04 Oct 2013 at 1:08 PM

Pershing Square Investors Standing By Their Man

William Ackman’s bad year is taking a big toll. The activist hedge-fund manager has seen his firm’s assets under management decline by $1.2 billion from a high point earlier this year, largely due to investment declines, according to people familiar with its operations…At the end of September, Pershing Square’s total assets under management stood at $11.2 billion, according to a person familiar with the matter. That is a $1.2 billion decline from the $12.4 billion that Pershing Square reported it had under management as of March 1 in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission…People with knowledge of the firm said the decline resulted almost completely from weak investment performance, and net redemptions by investors had amounted to less than $150 million so far in 2013. [WSJ]

The activist investor William A. Ackman has had a bruising year, but with one investment, Air Products and Chemicals, he now has something to show for his effort. Air Products, a producer of industrial gases, announced on Thursday that it would add three new directors to its board and begin a search for a new chief executive. The changes were supported by Mr. Ackman, whose firm, Pershing Square Capital Management, acquired a 9.8 percent stake in the company this year. [Dealbook]

On stop of the $660 million he shelled out several months back, natch. Read more »