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Chanos Shorts, Kupersmith Indictments, Magnetar Dismissed, Zevallos Launch

Jim Chanos Still Shorting Banks (Businessweek)

China is on “a bigger and faster treadmill” than ever as property sales slow, said Jim Chanos, the hedge-fund manager who’s shorting banking stocks on a bet the market will crash. “The Chinese are beginning to realize that property prices can go down as well as up and this is going to be a very, very troubling development for the Chinese property market,” Chanos, president and founder of $6 billion hedge fund Kynikos Associates Ltd., said in a Bloomberg Television interview from Singapore with Susan Li today.Jim Chanos puppeteer
Ian Gunner, Antony Lingard and Neil Panchen Join Robinson’s Altana (FINAlternatives)

Trafalgar Asset Management co-founder Lee Robinson‘s new firm is set to launch its maiden hedge fund. Monaco-based Altana Wealth has been running its Sovereign Diversity Fund with US$25 million of Robinson’s capital. But the firm is set to open the fund to external investors. Robinson founded Altana earlier this year after Trafalgar liquidated his Catalyst Fund. Altana runs a global macro strategy investing in sovereign debt, one that he had hoped to launch at Trafalgar until he dropped those plans due to opposition from Trafalgar investors and Goldman Sachs’ Petershill Fund, which owns a stake in the firm. Robinson has hired several top executives to staff Altana, including banking veteran Ian Gunner as portfolio manager, former UBS prime brokerage executive Antony Lingard as chief operating officer and former Deutsche Bank information technology specialist Neil Panchen as chief technology officer.

Scam Hedge Fund Manager Kupersmith Receives Two Indictments (FINAlternatives)

A Florida hedge fund manager is in a whole heap of trouble over an alleged “free-riding” trading fraud. Scott Kupersmith has been indicted twice over and, along with an alleged accomplice, sued by the Securities and Exchange Commission. According to federal prosecutors in New Jersey, where he used to live, and the Manhattan District Attorney’s office, Kupersmith ripped off both his brokerages through the free-riding scam and his clients by lying to them.

Magnetar Capital Charges Dismissed (FINAlternatives)

A federal judge has dismissed fraud charges against the only individual charged in the Securities and Exchange Commission’s lawsuit over a collateralized debt obligation linked to hedge fund Magnetar Capital. U.S. District Judge Miriam Goldman Cederbaum tossed an allegation that Edward Steffelin engaged in fraud or deceit in constructing the $1.1 billion Squared CDO 2007-1. The SEC had alleged that Steffelin, who worked at the firm, GSC Group, that selected the securities that went into the CDO, failed to disclose Magnetar’s role in picking those securities and that Magnetar was betting against the subprime mortgages that went into the CDO.

Maverick Vet Pedro Zevallos to Launch Latin American Fund, Matador Capital (FINAlternatives)

A Maverick Capital Management veteran is poised to launch a Latin America-focused hedge fund. Pedro Zevallos has founded Matador Capital Management in Dallas. The new firm will launch its maiden fund, Matador Latam, next month, HFMWeek reports. Matador will employ a long/short equity strategy in the region, according to an investor document. Zevallos spent nearly a decade at Maverick before founding Matador. At Maverick, he handed Latin America long/short investments. Zevallos previously worked at JPMorgan Fleming Asset Management.

David Tepper’s Vacant Lot (FINAlternatives)

David Tepper was in quite a rush to knock down the $43.5 million Hamptons mansion he bought last year. But the Appaloosa Management chief doesn’t seem to feel as much pressure to build a replacement.

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