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Hedge Fund and Insider Trading News: Bill Ackman, David Einhorn, Paul Singer, FS KKR Capital Corp (FSK), Ionis Pharmaceuticals Inc (IONS), and More

David Einhorn, Paul Taubman Select Duke in Bloomberg Brackets Challenge (Bloomberg)
It’s all chalk. At least when it comes to billionaire hedge-fund investors, chief executive officers and philanthropists making their picks for who will be crowned the national champion in men’s college basketball this year. Wall Street mavens ranging from Greenlight Capital LLC’s David Einhorn to PJT Partners CEO Paul Taubman and Bitcoin enthusiast Michael Novogratz picked the top-seeded Blue Devils of Duke University to cut down the nets in Minneapolis next month. A total of 23 out of the 52 titans of business and finance participating in Bloomberg’s Brackets for a Cause have the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament champs picked to win it all.

Platinum Goes Live with Catena TRACE for European Trade Reporting (HedgeWeek)
Platinum Asset Management, an equity-focused global investment manager based in Australia, has gone live using Catena technology’s TRACE Reporting solution to meet its OTC derivatives transaction reporting requirements for European Market Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR). Platinum will also be taking advantage of enhancements to TRACE Reporting that support Australian lifecycle reporting, which is required by Australian regulators beginning in July 2019. TRACE Reporting is a software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform that manages a wide range of functional requirements for trade reporting, including cross-asset coverage, valuation and collateral reporting, reconciliation, and multi-jurisdiction support, including ASIC, CFTC, EMIR, HKMA, MAS, MiFID II, and Securities Financing Transactions Regulation (SFTR).

Countries with the Smallest Government Per Capita in the World

Pressmaster/Shutterstock.com

After Suffering Bruising Losses, Ackman Pursues Quiet Recovery (The Wall Street Journal)
With performance bad and investors fleeing, Mr. Ackman ‘went activist’ on Pershing Square. William Ackman, once an omnipresent rabble-rouser, is barely visible these days. About a year after the shareholder activist stopped raising money for his private hedge fund in the wake of a pair of disastrous bets, Mr. Ackman has told his investors he is avoiding hard-to-understand companies, staying out of the media spotlight and returning to the basics of investment analysis that first catapulted him to success.

Michael Gelband’s Hedge Fund ExodusPoint has Added a Trio of Former Carlson Capital Staffers to its Growing Team (Business Insider)
Millennium Management‘s former fixed-income head, Michael Gelband, has hired Carlson Capital‘s former fixed-income head, Ivan Ross, to his new firm, sources tell Business Insider. Ross will run a fixed-income strategy at Gelband’s ExodusPoint Capital Management, which broke records when it launched with $8 billion in seed capital last year. The strategy will feed into the firm’s larger multi-strategy offering, sources say.

Paul Singer Unnerves Korea’s Billionaires Whether He Wins or Loses (Bloomberg)
For decades, South Korea’s most powerful tycoons ran their companies with little regard for minority shareholders. Then came Paul Singer. The hedge fund titan’s activist campaigns — first at Samsung Group in 2015 and now at Hyundai Motor Group — have trained a spotlight on the corporate governance failures and complex ownership structures that saddle South Korean stocks with some of the world’s lowest valuations. His calls for change have put the country’s biggest conglomerates on the defensive, triggered a wave of homegrown activism and turned shareholder returns into a national talking point.

AQR Veteran Wins ABN AMRO’s ‘AIF Factor’ for Most Convincing Hedge Fund Pitch in Amsterdam (Opalesque)
Launched in 2011, the ABN AMRO Amsterdam Investor Forum (AIF) is a landmark event in the Netherlands for the Alternative Investment Industry and organized by ABN AMRO Clearing. One highlight of the conference is the popular “AIF Factor”, a competition where 5 shortlisted funds are given the floor for a 3-minute pitch, to present their proposition to 250+ professional investors and managers. Delegates then cast their votes, appointing the most convincing pitch as the 2019 AIF Factor winner.

Hedge Funds Extend Winning Streak to a Second Month, Says BarclayHedge (HedgeWeek)
Hedge funds extended their winning streak to a second month with a February return of 1.24 per cent, according to the Barclay Hedge Fund Index compiled by BarclayHedge. By comparison, the S&P 500 Total Return Index rose 3.21 per cent for the month. Year to date, hedge funds gained 4.98 per cent while the S&P was up 11.48 per cent. “Markets quickly overcame the downdraft precipitated by a strong US wage growth report that stoked inflation fears and rising interest rate jitters early in the month,” says Sol Waksman (pictured), president of BarclayHedge. “Multiyear highs for corporate profits and consumer confidence were able to promptly recapture investor enthusiasm.”

New Research: Execs, Directors Insider Trading on Gap Between Earnings and Audit Report (MarketWatch)
New information coming in the audit report will give execs even more of an edge and encourage more insider trading, researchers say. Corporate executives and directors are trading on inside information about potential audit findings in the window between year-end earnings announcements and when companies file annual reports and audit opinions with the Securities and Exchange Commission, according to new research. Companies didn’t use to announce fourth-quarter earnings until the auditors’ work was done and the annual report with its opinion was issued. Since 2004, however, after new audit requirements were mandated by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act as a result of the failure of Enron and the dissolution of its audit firm Arthur Andersen, audits are taking longer to finish.

Insider Buying And A Spinoff Mean It’s Time To Take A Second Look At Arconic (Forbes)
The serving Chairman and newly appointed CEO of the aluminum giant Arconic, which is facing a class action suit following the deaths of 72 victims in the London Grenfell fire in 2017, is cashing in and could make as much as $20 million in just a year as he takes a smoke-and-mirrors approach to the company’s future. John Plant, who agreed to a “perpetual” gagging order when he took the helm last month, bought nearly $4 million worth of shares in addition to his $1.6 million base salary in a one-week buying-spree, according to analysts at The Edge, who have been following developments amid his plans for a Spinoff designed to push up the share price.

A Director at Ionis Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: IONS) is Selling Shares (AnalystRatings)
Today, a Director at Ionis Pharmaceuticals Inc (IONS), Joseph Wender, sold shares of IONS for $796.2K. Following Joseph Wender’s last IONS Sell transaction on July 19, 2018, the stock climbed by 33.8%. Based on Ionis Pharmaceuticals Inc’s latest earnings report for the quarter ending December 31, the company posted quarterly revenue of $192 million and quarterly net profit of $320 million.

Thursday 3/21 Insider Buying Report: FSK, HIIQ (Nasdaq.com)
Bargain hunters are wise to pay careful attention to insider buying, because although there are many various reasons for an insider to sell a stock, presumably the only reason they would use their hard-earned cash to make a purchase, is that they expect to make money. Today we look at two noteworthy recent insider buys. On Wednesday, FS KKR Capital Corp (FSK)’s Chief Executive Officer, Michael C. Forman, made a $249,413 purchase of FSK, buying 40,480 shares at a cost of $6.16 a piece. Bargain hunters have the opportunity to grab FSK even cheaper than Forman did, with the stock trading as low as $6.02 in trading on Thursday – that’s 2.3% under Forman’s purchase price. FS KKR Capital Corp is trading up about 0.2% on the day Thursday. Before this latest buy, Forman purchased FSK at 10 other times during the past twelve months, for a total cost of $6.95M at an average of $5.31 per share.

Legacy Reserves Inc (NASDAQ:LGCY) Insider Trading Activity – Major Shareholder Bought 601,000 shares of Stock (MarketExclusive)
Insider Trading Activity For Legacy Reserves Inc (NASDAQ:LGCY): Baines Creek Capital, Llc , Major Shareholder of Legacy Reserves Inc (NASDAQ:LGCY) reportedly Bought 601,000 shares of the company’s stock at an average price of 0.52 for a total transaction amount of $312,520.00.

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