Leon Cooperman Is Done Wasting His Life On You People

Without spite to keep him going, there’s just no reason for him to run a hedge fund anymore.
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A couple of years ago, still suffering in the depths of the Hedge Fund Dark Ages brought on by a man whose lack of chivalry irked him to no end, Leon Cooperman thought about hanging things up. He was 73, had through guile and frugality made himself a very rich man, and was none too pleased with the ingratitude of other people he’d made very rich. But then the SEC, acting on an unknowing tip from Cooperman’s son, decided it would try to make him retire, on account of the alleged insider-trading. To which Cooperman replied that regulators would have to pry the outside capital from his cold, dead hands.

LeonCooperman

Well, Leon Cooperman is not dead, and is feeling his least grumpy in years. That guy who wouldn’t name his granddaughter poet laureate has been replaced by a guy that maybe isn’t the best billionaire who could be president, but is at least a guy who returns Coop’s calls—calls him, in fact, seeking advice. The market is ripe with opportunity. And, most importantly, the SEC isn’t trying to kick him out of the hedge fund industry anymore. Which is great for Leon and Wayne Cooperman, but which also means the only reason the elder Cooperman continues to manage outside capital—spite—is no more. So he’s not gonna do it anymore.

Mr. Cooperman said his New York hedge fund, Omega Advisors Inc., which was founded in 1991, will now manage only his personal wealth. Mr. Cooperman, who regularly appears on financial television, said the decision was driven “solely by how I want to spend my remaining years….”

In the letter to clients, Mr. Cooperman wrote: “I turned 75 last April. It is my understanding that if you make it past 65 and cancer doesn’t get you, you can expect to live on average to 85. Hopefully, I can improve on that average, but in any event I don’t want to spend the rest of my life chasing the S&P 500 and focused on generating returns on investor capital.”

Leon Cooperman Is Turning Omega Hedge Fund Into Family Office [WSJ]

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Leon Cooperman's Beef With President Obama Involves An Unsolicited Copy Of His 14 Year-Old Granddaughter's Self-Published Memoirs And Not One Handwritten Thank-You Note In Return

Last November, hedge fund manager Leon Cooperman penned an "Open Letter To The President Of The United States of America," in which he detailed the many ways Barack Obama was pissing him off. The Omega Advisors founder accused the President (and his "minions") of engaging in class warfare, expressed disbelief that he could attack "capitalists who...fill store shelves at Christmas" and still sleep at night, and advised Obama to "eschew the polarizing vernacular of political militancy," lest he lose* Cooperman's vote the next year.  While LC says that he received a major outpouring of support for his words ("[he] keeps a bulging manila folder of congratulatory notes in his office"), others were less than pleased at what they saw as a guy who actually has done pretty okay under Obama lashing out because his feelings were hurt on the occasions the president was perceived to have a "tone" in his voice when discussing the mega-wealthy ("If I knew where you lived, I’d put a bomb in your car," one person wrote Cooperman to say). Similarly, Cooperman's suggestion, on at least two occasions, that America should be worried about the startling parallels between Obama's rise to power and that of Adolf Hitler,** was met with mixed reviews, including one by his wife in which she called him a "schmuck." And while some*** have found it preposterous that Cooperman would paint himself as a victim of Obama, their astonishment speaks to not knowing the whole story, i.e. exactly what this man- no, this monster- did to Leon. Last July, before he had written the letter, Cooperman was invited to the White House for a reception to honor wealthy philanthropists who had signed Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett’s Giving Pledge, promising to donate at least fifty per cent of their net worth to charity. At the event, Cooperman handed the President two copies of “Inspired: My Life (So Far) in Poems,” a self-published book written by Courtney Cooperman, his fourteen-year-old granddaughter. Cooperman was surprised that the President didn’t send him a thank-you note or that Malia and Sasha Obama, for whom the books were intended as a gift and to whom Courtney wrote a separate letter, didn’t write to Courtney. (After Cooperman grumbled to a few friends, including Cory Booker, the mayor of Newark, Michelle Obama did write. Booker, who was also a recipient of Courtney’s book, promptly wrote her “a very nice note,” Cooperman said.) Now do you understand? Now do you understand? Even Hitler would have sent SOMETHING. Super-Rich Irony [New Yorker] Earlier: Leon Cooperman Doesn't Like The Tone Of President Obama's Voice *Just messing about him ever being in a position to "lose" it, of course. **Settle down, he wasn't saying Obama IS Hitler, would would be biologically impossible, he was just saying Obama is the second coming of Hitler, which is something people should be aware of: “You know, the largest and greatest country in the free world put a forty-seven-year-old guy that never worked a day in his life and made him in charge of the free world,” Cooperman told the New Yorker in May. “Not totally different from taking Adolf Hitler in Germany and making him in charge of Germany because people were economically dissatisfied. Now, Obama’s not Hitler. I don’t even mean to say anything like that. But it is a question that the dissatisfaction of the populace was so great that they were willing to take a chance on an untested individual.” ***Mrs. Cooperman, for example.: She is still a liberal, a position that puts her in the minority in their social circle. “She can be a socialist because she’s married to a capitalist,” Cooperman says of his wife, who is strongly pro-choice and pro-gay marriage. She calls Todd Akin, Rick Santorum, and Rick Perry “morons,” and she worries about the underclass. “I care more about the disadvantaged people of America,” she said, comparing her politics with those of her husband.