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Hedge Fund and Insider Trading News: Jim Chanos, Elliott Management, Surface Oncology Inc (SURF), Associated Banc Corp (ASB), Nutanix Inc (NTNX), and More

Short-seller Jim Chanos Says Elon Musk ‘May be Misleading Investors’ (CNBC)
Short-seller Jim Chanos is blasting Elon Musk’s leadership at Tesla. Musk “may be misleading investors,” he said Thursday on CNBC’s “Squawk Box.” “I think Elon Musk has crossed the Rubicon in terms of making statements to investors that he might rue later.” The Kynikos Associates hedge fund manager, who confirmed his firm is short Tesla shares, cited Musk’s announcements about future products. “He said the Roadster will be available in 2020 and Semi [truck] will be entering production next year,” Chanos said. “I don’t think either of those are going to happen.”

Activist Investor Elliott Buys UK Bookshop Chain Waterstones (Reuters)
LONDON (Reuters) – British bookshop chain Waterstones is to be acquired by Elliott Advisers, the U.S. activist hedge fund which has made its presence felt in the UK’s corporate world recently by helping force the demerger of Costa Coffee amongst other shake ups. Waterstones said on Thursday that Elliott would become its new owner, providing all the financing for the transaction, with its previous backer Lynwood Investments retaining a minority stake. The terms of the deal were not disclosed. The chief executive of Waterstones said the Elliott deal represented a “happy outcome” for the book shop chain.

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A Steve Cohen-backed Trading Firm is Rolling Out Data for Quant Wannabees (CNBC)
A quant-trading firm backed by hedge fund billionaire Steve Cohen is rolling out data for professional money managers to develop new trading ideas. The firm, Quantopian, which invites scientists to share and sell licenses for their computer codes, planned to announce on Thursday it has a new partnership with FactSet. FactSet is one of the largest data providers already in use across Wall Street.

New Book Chronicles the Ackman-Icahn Rivalry Over Herbalife (Bizjournals.com)
A new book recounts a battle between New York billionaires – with a Los Angeles nutritional company caught in the middle. Scott Wapner’s new book, “When the Wolves Bite: Two Billionaires, One Company, and an Epic Wall Street Battle,” chronicles Bill Ackman‘s five-year battle against another activist investor, Carl Icahn. The two investors had a notorious back-and-forth over nutrition company Herbalife Ltd. Wapner argues that Ackman made a risky move when he bet that nutrition giant Herbalife (NYSE: HLF) would be shut down by the government. Icahn opposed the view and kept acquiring more shares.

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