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Amaranth Turns Into Job Placement Agency

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TAs we reported last week, people are still working at Amaranth. You haven’t forgotten them already, have you? They were the hedge fund whose Calgary based energy trading desk bet big on natural gas futures and lost big. So big, in fact, that Bloomberg says its losses were the costliest ever for hedge fund investors.
Well, people are still working there. But not for long. About 250 of Amaranth’s 420 employees will be dismissed, the firm announced. It’s offering to help employees find new jobs. It’s even stressing that unlike a traditional recruiting firm, there won’t be head-hunting fees associated with job placements it makes for its people.
The mystery here is what the remaining 180 employees not being dismissed by Amaranth are going to do. Some will no doubt have to be kept on to oversee the transfer of Amaranth assets to buyers and the redemption of funds to investors—but that sounds like a job for about twelve people. What’s everyone else there doing?
Or maybe the real mystery is why anyone would stay on at Amaranth? Again, maybe it’s appealing for some wind-down specialists, but what’s in it for everyone else? After a couple of months, won’t remaining Amaranth employees start to look like people who couldn’t get a job anywhere else?
Amaranth to Cut About 60% of Workers as It Liquidates [Bloomberg]