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Hedge Fund News: Kyle Bass, Edward Lampert & David Tepper

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Frontiers forge ahead as emerging markets disappoint (FT)
Kyle Bass, a hedge fund manager who made a fortune betting against Greek bonds and US subprime, dropped a bombshell at a conference in September: he is investing in Argentina, Latin America’s perennial problem child and a nemesis of hedge funds. Mr Bass is unfazed by the country’s reputation, and confidently predicted that pro-business politicians would take over after presidential elections in 2015. “Argentina’s problems can be fixed in two years,” he argued. “Now is the time to start investing.” The US hedge fund manager is not the only one intrigued by the investment opportunities of Argentina.

Kyle Bass

Sears Loss Widens as Lampert Seeks Asset Sales (Bloomberg)
Sears Holdings Corporation (NASDAQ:SHLD) posted a wider third-quarter loss as Chief Executive Officer Edward Lampert works to sell more of the department-store chain’s assets to drum up cash amid a six-year sales decline. The net loss, the company’s sixth in a row, widened to $534 million, or $5.03 a share, from $498 million, or $4.70, a year earlier, Hoffman Estates, Illinois-based Sears said today in a statement. Sears said last month it would report a loss of $532 million to $582 million for the 12 weeks ended Nov. 2. Sales fell 6.6 percent to $8.27 billion.

U.S. hedge fund advisor pleads guilty to child porn charges (GNom)
Prominent hedge fund advisor Ezra Zask pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography in a New York court on Wednesday, avoiding jail time for the charges. The founder of hedge fund consulting firm SFC Associates and author of numerous books on investing was arrested in his Manhattan apartment in July of last year after police, acting on a search warrant, found numerous illegal videos and images on his computer, the New York City police department said. Zask entered the guilty plea in front of New York Supreme Court Judge Larry Stephen and is scheduled to be sentenced in March. “The agreed upon sentence is one of probation,” Zask’s lawyer Alan Futerfas said.

New complete guide to the world of hedge funds comes on the scene (Opalesque)
Daniel Capocci’s latest book, « The complete guide to hedge funds & hedge fund strategies » (Palgrave Macmillan), is the latest endeavour from an author to explain the basics of the many facets of this investment vehicle. There are no shortages of books nowadays explaining the hedge fund world, but this 500+ page book is perfectly suited for those who want a complete run around the specificities of hedge funds. Capocci is senior investment manager at Architas Multi-Manager, a member of the global AXA Group, and has been analysing the hedge fund industry for 15 years…

Former Hedge Fund Manager Indicted for Defrauding Investors (NewsroomAmerica)
Stanley J. Kowalewski has been arrested in South Carolina after being indicted by a federal grand jury in Atlanta for defrauding investors of hedge funds of up to $8 million and for obstructing the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s subsequent investigation of his activities. “Kowalewski is charged with stealing from the investors who trusted him and then repeatedly lying to them and the SEC about his self-dealing,” said United States Attorney Sally Quillian Yates. “The victims of his greed include pension funds, schools, hospitals, and other non-profits who lost over $8 million in hard-earned money, which Kowalewski diverted to his own personal use.”

Activist Pushing for Change at Darden Hires Outside Advisers (NYTimes)
The activist hedge fund pushing for change at Darden Restaurants signaled on Thursday that it was ramping up its pressure. Barington Capital, which it owns over 2 percent of the restaurant group’s shares, announced that it has hired the investment bank Houlihan Lokey to conduct “an independent review” of its recommended changes to the company’s strategy. In perhaps a more intriguing move, Barington said that it had also hired MacKenzie Partners, a proxy soliciting firm often used in board fights.

Fed won’t taper anytime soon: Pro (CNBC)

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