Hedge Fund News: Carl Icahn, Warren Buffett & Wilbur Ross

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Slow down Carl: Not all Apple shareholders want an big share buyback (CNBC)
For months, Carl Icahn has been pushing Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) CEO Tim Cook to use the company’s $158 billion war chest to buy back company shares, and hopefully substantially boost its stock price. But not every Apple shareholder agrees with that strategy, and at least one big one doesn’t appreciate Icahn’s activism. “It’s the tail wagging the dog. [Icahn's] recent letter was rambling and contradictory,” says Anne Simpson, senior portfolio manager of investments and director of corporate governance for the California Public Employees’ Retirement System.

Carl Icahn as viking

Fund targets legally entangled RMBS (Reuters)
A hedge fund holding legacy mortgage securities entangled in JPMorgan Chase & Co (NYSE:JPM)‘s proposed private settlement with institutional investors is offering other bondholders a whopping 833% premium compared with the bank’s recovery offer in order to get hold of one specific battered bond, according to offer documents seen by IFR. On January 22, New York-based Fir Tree Partners made a cash tender offer to buy some of the six mortgage bonds caught up in the proposed US$4.5bn settlement from 21 institutional investors. The settlement was arranged by law firm Gibbs & Bruns and the investors include BlackRock, Inc. (NYSE:BLK) and Pimco.

Joho Capital Calls It Quits (Finalternatives)
Joho Capital Management is going out on a high note. The New York-based hedge fund’s founder, Robert Karr, told investors yesterday that he would close the $5.1 billion Asia-focused fund, returning their money by the end of the quarter. Karr cited the travel necessary to run a firm with offices around the world, as well as the increasingly challenging market environment. “Since the financial crisis, solid returns have been more challenging, but with a strong 2013, I feel now is the time,” Karr, a Tiger Management veteran, wrote…

Hedge Fund Bets Broncos Will Be Champions Sunday (Finalternatives)
A well-worn sporting trope warns that contests aren’t decided on sheets of statistics—they are decided on the field. Analytic Investors may not disagree with that cliché, but it is willing to bet—literally—that it knows in advance who will win Sunday’s Super Bowl. The Los Angeles hedge fund has produced a hedge-fund-like model to analyze each of the 32 teams in the National Football League. And its NFL Alphas analysis has picked the winner of the Super Bowl in nine of the last 10 contests. The Alphas model analyzes teams as though they were stocks, attempting to determine their “returns on investment” over the course of the year, in this case the investment being the point spread established by Las Vegas bookmakers…

Preqin: 84% of institutional investors surveyed say hedge funds met or exceeded expectations in 2013 (PIOnline)
Collectively, 84% of institutional investors surveyed expressed satisfaction with their hedge fund portfolio performance in 2013 — 21% said returns exceeded their expectations and 63% said returns met expectations, while 16% said returns fell short. By type, 59% of investors in long/short equity funds indicated returns exceeded expectations, followed by event driven (27%), long/short credit (13%), distressed (12%) and macro (9%). Forty-nine percent of managed futures/CTA investors and 43% of macro investors said returns fell short of expectations.

Stock Draft: Brian’s Ballers vs. Mandy’s Mavericks (CNBC)

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