John Paulson

“I couldn’t even read the whole application,” he said to guffaws from several hundred young Jewish professionals gathered sipping on spirits and kosher wine at event space Chelsea Pearl to hear his advice on how to make it in finance. “I did review part of the application, about 40 pages [out of 500], and the information we provided doesn’t make any sesne to me. How could it possibly make sense to the SEC? It’s a complete waste of time,” he added. “They don’t know what they’re looking for, the just asked for everything in every possible way…I don’t believe the Dodd-Frank law is a positive piece of legislation,” he said dryly, understating his distaste. “I ordered the bill; there are 2,000 pages. I couldn’t read the table of contents. I don’t know anyone who has read it. I think it has retarded the recovery…it’s complete gobbledygook.” [AR]

In a pinch, Steve Cohen has made himself a few zip-up fleece jackets with only a travel sewing kit and some Silly Putty at his disposal. Alone in the woods and miles from home, Ray Dalio has been known to fashion slingshots out of the remains of wildebeests. Having blown through all his 100-count packs already and in a race against the clock, George Soros has constructed condoms out of strips of bacon; old tea bags; and British pounds. According to Dealbook, however, today they must all bow down to the master. Read more »

“John Paulson, the billionaire hedge- fund manager coming off record losses in 2011, reported increases in most of his funds in August as rising stock markets lifted the value of holdings, according to two people briefed on the returns. Paulson’s Gold Fund led gains with an 11 percent jump in August, which reduced losses this year to 15 percent, said the people, asking not to be named because the information is private. The Advantage funds, which seek to profit from corporate events such as takeovers and bankruptcies, and Paulson Enhanced, which aims to make money from companies involved in mergers, also rose last month.” [Bloomberg]

Citigroup’s private bank is pulling about $500 million from Paulson & Co., the hedge fund run by billionaire John Paulson seeking to reverse record losses in 2011, according to two people familiar with the matter. The private bank is redeeming from Paulson’s Advantage Fund and Advantage Plus Fund, said the people who asked not to be identified because the information is private…Citigroup’s private bank in May advised clients not to add money to the Paulson funds, a person familiar with the matter said at the time. [Bloomberg]

Was 2011 a very kind year to John Paulson? No, it was not. Is 2012 shaping up to be any different? Not really, no. His proclamation that last year’s losses were but an “aberration” has not exactly been backed up by the fact that AP was down 16 percent through June.  A few clients have not only quit the fund but told anybody who will listen that leaving was one of the best decisions they’ve ever made. Also not great is the fact that assets under management have declined 44.9 percent to $21 billion from $38.1 billion, due to a combination of unfortunate performance and redemptions. Happily, though, there is a silver lining that perhaps few people have thought of, namely that John Paulson’s got mucho of his own dinero in the firm and he hasn’t given up on the place yet. Read more »

Former Paulson Protégé In A Charitable Places About Losses

Remember Paolo Pellegrini? For those who need a refresher, the Italian Stallion is the former Paulson and Co. employee who helped John come up with a highly lucrative subprime trade, later leaving the firm to set up his own shop (the delightfully named PSQR AKA Pellegrini Squared) after some reported friction re: whether or not he was getting enough credit for netting the hedge fund billions via ‘the greatest trade ever.’ PSQR returned 40% in 2008 and 61.6% in 2009 and then in August 2010, Pellegrini gave back all outside investor capital, stating that he would be focusing on managing his own money. And speaking of Paolo’s pennies, the ones he had invested with Paulson have taken a li’l bit of a hit lately. But according to Big P, who previously dabbled in DJ’ing and efforts to get pot legalized, it’s all good. Read more »

“We know that about investing with John Paulson. He makes macroeconomic calls,” says Joelle Mevi, the chief investment officer of the New Mexico PERA [which piled into the fund after 2007 and has since  liquidated its holdings]. But “we started to notice a consistent underperformance of the fund, and we were noticing a bit of style drift” — investor-speak for getting into areas outside one’s expertise. And, Mevi says, “The Sino-Forest issue was notable.” “If you’re going to come in and then leave, come in and leave, I don’t think you’ll reap the benefits of investing with us,” Paulson says. “Investors that do the best, and have done the best, are those that stay and compound at above-average rates over the long term.” [Bloomberg Markets, earlier]