Hedge Fund and Insider Trading News: Leon Cooperman, Tom Steyer, Highland Capital Management, Mariner Investment Group, Elliott Management, E.l.f. Beauty Inc. (ELF), Dillard’s, Inc. (DDS), and More

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Leon Cooperman Says the Stock Market Would Drop 25% if Elizabeth Warren is Elected (CNBC)
Billionaire investor Leon Cooperman took aim on Wednesday at what an Elizabeth Warren presidency would mean for the stock market. “If Elizabeth Warren is elected president, in my opinion, the market drops 25%,” Cooperman told CNBC’s “Squawk Box.” “Bernie Sanders, same thing.”

Highland Capital Management Files for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy: Court Filing (Reuters)
(Reuters) – Investment firm Highland Capital Management LP filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, amidst a legal battle with investors, a court filing showed. In a petition, the fund manager listed investors in its shuttered Highland Crusader Fund as its largest creditor. The hedge fund closed in 2008, during the financial crisis. Highland owes a disputed $189.3 million in debt to a committee of Crusader Fund investors, according to the petition.

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AT&T Union Says Elliott’s Proposals Could Affect 30,000 Jobs (Bloomberg)
If activist shareholder Elliott Management Corp. has its way, more than 30,000 AT&T Inc. workers could lose their jobs or face reductions in wages, according to a new estimate from the Communications Workers of America union. Most of the impact on workers would come from divestitures of DirecTV and AT&T’s landline business and closures of the company’s retail locations, if the company follows Elliott’s suggestions, said the CWA, which represents more than 100,000 AT&T employees.

SocGen offloads $3.4 bln eur of risk in deal with Mariner Investment Group (Reuters)
PARIS, Oct 16 (Reuters) – Societe Generale said on Wednesday it transferred $3.4 billion of risk linked to a portfolio of 250 loans to hedge fund Mariner Investment Group, as the French bank continued to clean up its balance sheet in a bid to strengthen capital ratios. France’s third-biggest bank has said it would cuts costs and reduce the volume of risk on its balance sheet linked to its investment banking operations.

Self-funding Billionaire Tom Steyer Floods Early-State Airwaves (The Wall Street Journal)
Billionaire Tom Steyer appeared on the Democratic presidential debate stage for the first time Tuesday night, but voters in early states have already seen him on TV thousands of times. Mr. Steyer, who new federal filings show has poured nearly $48 million of his own money into his long-shot bid, is dominating television screens in the first four states that will hold nominating contests early next year.

Fund Targets ‘House Rich, Cash Poor’ Plays (HFAlert.com)
A former Bain Capital executive is marketing a fund with an unusual strategy: buying minority equity stakes in single-family homes. Hometap Equity, a Boston firm led by Jeffrey Glass, offers alternative financing to homeowners who are “house rich, cash poor.” Instead of lending money against their properties, Hometap seeks to purchase ownership interests equal to 9% of a home’s appraised value – in exchange for agreements by property owners to eventually buy back the stakes at a value equal to 15%, under most circumstances. The strategy yields a day-one gain most asset managers could only dream of: “Each investment is worth 1.67 times at closing,” according to marketing materials circulated by placement agent Harken Capital of Boston.

Corporate-Jet Ownership Flies Mostly Under Shareholders’ Radar (Barron’s)
Many S&P 500 companies still use private jets-eschewing commercial travel for top executives-but finding out which ones do so is surprisingly hard. One that was brought into public view this week is Emerson Electric (ticker: EMR). Activist investment fund D.E. Shaw has taken issue with Emerson’s fleet of corporate jets.

Hedge Fund Buys Magazine Wholesaler Cowley Distributing Inc. (NYPost.com)
Chatham Asset Management, the hedge fund headed by Anthony Melchiorre, has snapped up another magazine wholesale operation – this one in the Midwest – to add to its American News Co. operation. The newest acquisition is Cowley Distributing Inc., headquartered in Jefferson City, Mo. The business distributes magazines to nine midwestern states.

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