And who's to even say the hedge fund manager wanted those $2 billion in assets? Maybe among his (rapidly dwindling) assets, those were his least favorite. Maybe he's been relishing the opportunity to get lean. Maybe his favorite cliché is the one about how things can only better from here [gestures to the basement of 1251 Avenue of the Americas]. Maybe losing $2 billion in a matter of months is one of the only ways a multi-billion dollar hedge fund manager can really feel alive.
John Paulson’s losing bets on Allergan and Valeant have contributed to a near $2bn fall in his funds’ assets in the space of five months, taking the total amount managed by his hedge fund business to its lowest level in almost 10 years. Paulson & Co, one of the titans of the US hedge fund industry, made billions of dollars betting against subprime mortgages ahead of the financial crisis. Its Advantage Plus fund returned 17 per cent in 2010, following gains of 21.5 per cent in 2009, 37.6 per cent in 2008 and 158.5 per cent in 2007. But fund documents show that the company’s assets under management had fallen to $14.3bn as of March 1, down from $16.1bn in November, and from a high of $36bn back in 2011. These numbers are unlikely to have improved since March, given sharp falls in the price of Mr Paulson’s pharmaceuticals holdings.