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Hedge Fund and Insider Trading News: Bruce Berkowitz, Brevan Howard, General Electric (GE), Concurrent Computer Corp (CCUR), and More

One of Sears’ Biggest Defenders Just Revealed Why He Abruptly Cut Ties With the Company (Business Insider)
Hedge fund manager Bruce Berkowitz came out swinging against Sears after quietly leaving its board of directors four months ago. Berkowitz, who has long been one of Sears’ biggest defenders and remains its second-largest shareholder, wrote in a letter to investors on Monday that Sears “wrecked” the performance of his hedge fund, Fairholme Capital Management. “Although markets reached new highs in 2017, there was not much to celebrate as the securities of Sears Holdings Corporation (‘Sears’) and Sears Canada wrecked the Funds’ performance,” Berkowitz wrote. “Sears realized billions of dollars from asset sales, as we predicted, but I did not foresee the operating losses that have significantly reduced values.

New Brevan Howard Fund Starts 2018 With a Bang (The Wall Street Journal)
A new hedge fund run by Brevan Howard Asset Management LLP star trader Alfredo Saitta has chalked up one of the industry’s best performances so far this year, as the fund giant battles to rebuild its business. The $500 million AS Macro fund, run by former JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Citigroup Inc. trader Mr. Saitta, gained 6.7% through Jan. 26, according to an investor letter reviewed by The Wall Street Journal.



Loeb, Laffont Hedge Funds Start Year With Big January Gains (Bloomberg)
Hedge fund managers Dan Loeb and Philippe Laffont are picking up this year where they left off in 2017: making lots of money. Loeb’s Third Point Ultra fund returned 5.5 percent in January and his Third Point Offshore fund rose 3.7 percent, according to a person familiar with matter. Laffont’s Coatue Qualified Partners surged 9.9 percent last month, according to an investor document seen by Bloomberg News. Both managers appear to have benefited from the surge in technology stocks. The Nasdaq Composite Index gained 7.4 percent in January.

Ex-Citadel Exec. Not Screwing Around (DealBreaker)
Citadel Investment Group founder Ken Griffin does not take the non-compete agreements he makes employees sign lightly. In a crowded field, perhaps no one this side of Alan Howard takes them quite as seriously. Daniel Nehren knows this. He worked for Griffin for two whole years—an eternity by Citadel standards—before departing, eventually for Barclays, in May of last year. We say eventually because, of course, Nehren had an eight-month non-compete to wait out, and in case K.G. was thinking of making his former equity execution head the next Misha Malyshev, Nehren’s decided to be as conspicuous in his non-competition as possible.

Einhorn’s Main Hedge Fund Posts Worst Monthly Loss Since 2008 (Bloomberg)
(Bloomberg) — David Einhorn’s Greenlight Capital hit a wall in January as its main hedge fund lost 6.6 percent, its worst monthly performance since October 2008. The question is why. A performance update seen by Bloomberg News offers few hints, saying only that the firm ticked up its long and short exposure somewhat. The performance is the latest setback in a difficult few years for Greenlight. After losing more than 20 percent in 2015, the firm has struggled as it has stuck to its value-investing strategy. Wagers against a “bubble basket” of technology stocks have also failed to deliver, as investor enthusiasm remains strong for these companies.