Andrew Left is a Gen Xer, that grungy population cohort typified by irony and skepticism. Those generational impulses were forged and honed by his nine months in a Florida boiler room, after which he realized that shorting the sort of stocks he formerly promoted could be both lucrative and also less likely to earn him another three-year sanction from the National Futures Association.
“When we started Citron” Research, his research and hedge fund firm, “it was to be against the establishment,” Left said, as befits a guy who was in college when Nirvana broke through. It was also very, very lucrative. But kids these days? With their TikToks and Discords and whathaveyou? They’re not into that kind of mopey, hard-edged negativity. They want to log in to Robinhood, buy their stonks and rocket to the moon, preferably with their research limited to emoji-laden Reddit posts imploring no one sell. Plus, while they don’t want to hear a bad word said about individual stocks, they’re quite free in doling them out to those who do, or anyone else standing in between them and a $1,000-per-share GameStop.
“The risk-reward of being a short seller is not worth it; it’s not worth it for me or my family,” Mr. Left said in an interview…. “Young people want to buy stocks. That’s the zeitgeist. They don’t want to short stocks, so I’m going to help them buy stocks,” he said.
Now, before you WallStreetBets degenerates dismiss Left and send another few dozen pineapple and barbecue sauce pizzas to his house, hear him out. Left doesn’t only short lemons. He’s gone long from time to time. Sure, it hasn’t always worked out for him, but remember this: He was in on the O.G. GameStop before a lot of you even had that little green feather icon on your phone. Let him help you. He never wanted to become The Man.
“I’ll take the skepticism and mentality of short selling and apply it to the long side,” he said…. “When we started Citron, it was to be against the establishment. We’ve actually become the establishment,” said Mr. Left in the video.