Hedge Fund News: Crispin Odey, Thomas Sandell & Bernard Madoff

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The £22m football bet: Hedge fund guru Crispin Odey shorts Manchester United shares (ThisIsMoney)
Hedge fund guru Crispin Odey has made a £22million bet that Manchester United’s poor performance on the field will be echoed in the stock market. The founder of Odey Asset Management has taken out a 0.78 per cent ‘short position’ on the club, signalling his belief that its shares will fall. A short position is when an investor borrows stock in the expectation that it will lose value, then sells it immediately. If and when the price drops, they buy the shares back and pocket the difference.

Crispin Odey

Hedge funds attract billions in new money (FT)
Hedge fund managers are attracting new money and preparing expansion plans, even though their performance has fallen behind roaring equity markets this year, thanks to a shift in how investors view the industry. Funds brought in $360bn this year in investment returns and inflows from investors, an increase of 15.7 per cent on their assets under management at the end of 2012, according to new figures from the data provider Preqin. The continued growth comes as investors lower their expectations of returns from hedge funds and instead view them as a way of increasing diversification and reducing volatility in their portfolio.

European hedge funds pay ‘premium’ (GlobalInvestorMagazine)
The gap between European and US hedge funds is widening, according to a new survey by Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C)’s prime finance business. European hedge funds are paying a “premium” running their firms, the 2013 Business expense benchmark survey found. Their management company costs appeared to be higher than the same charges being realises by US firms. Hedge funds with $100m, $500m, $5bn and more than $10b AuM are paying a premium of at least 20% in expenses compared to their US counterparts.

Wilton’s Commonfund Appoints New Head Of Hedge Fund Research (Wilton)
Wilton’s Commonfund, an institutional investment firm serving nonprofits, pension funds and other institutional investors, has named Kristofer S. Kwait as the new head of hedge fund research. Kwait, a 12-year veteran of the firm, is already the managing director of Commonfund. He will perform the duties associated with both titles moving forward. “Since joining Commonfund, Kris has been instrumental in our ability to set a high standard in manager identification and selection, portfolio analysis, due diligence and investment monitoring,” Nicholas De Monico, Chief Executive Officer, Commonfund Hedge Fund Strategies Group said in a statement.

Hedge Fund Lions’ Den: Emerging managers face the test (Risk)
Pitching funds to investors is a talent. In episode three of Hedge Fund Lions’ Den, the lions hear a two-minute offer from each manager. First up to face the lions are CJ Donley and Robert Toffel from Strategis Capital Management followed by Neil Meadows of Laurentia Funds. The third pitch is by Christina McGuire and Gordon Eichhorst from Aperios Partners Investment. All the managers are then interrogated by the lions: Andrew McCaffery from Aberdeen Asset Management; Luke Ellis, president of Man Group; and the godfather of the hedge fund industry, Stanley Fink, now chief executive of ISAM. The Strategis offering, started just under a year ago, takes a quantitative approach to portfolio management but risk management is at the heart of its strategy, both at portfolio and trade level.

Valuation is like beauty in eye of beholder: Cramer (CNBC)

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