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Hedge Fund and Insider Trading News: Michael Platt, Warren Buffett, Balyasny Asset Management, AQR Capital, Aspen Group Inc (ASPU), W&T Offshore, Inc. (WTI), and More

Balyasny Gains in First Half After Losses Prompted Reorganization in 2018 (Reuters)
BOSTON (Reuters) – Balyasny Asset Management, a Chicago-based hedge fund that shed $4 billion in assets last year and cut 20% of its staff, was back in positive territory for the first half of this year, suggesting its massive overhaul might be paying off, analysts said. In the January through June period, the firm returned 8% and cleared its high-water mark, the hurdle required to start charging performance fees again. The firm, whose assets totaled $6 billion at the end of June, employs many teams that invest in a variety of strategies and hired three top executives to shift course during the painful 2018.

Deutsche Bank Hires AQR Capital Technology Chief for €13 billion Digital Push (GlobalCustodian.com)
The chief technology officer at AQR Capital is set to leave the global hedge fund to join Deutsche Bank as its group chief information officer. Deutsche Bank said in a statement that Neal Pawar will take on the senior role based in New York as of early September, and will also become a member of the group management committee. He will report to Bernd Leukert, who is also due to start a new role at the bank in September, leading technology, data and innovation across the business. Pawar joins Deutsche Bank from AQR Capital where he was formerly chief technology officer and principal. Prior to AQR, he was a managing director and chief information officer at UBS Wealth Management based in Zurich.

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Britain‘s Wealthiest Hedge Fund Managers are Revealed in Mostly-male Sunday Times Rich List (Easton Caller)
Britain‘s richest hedge fund managers have increased their joint wealth to an eye-watering £18bn over the past year. Michael Platt of Belgravia-based BlueCrest Capital remains top of the pile with £3.7bn after his wealth ballooned by more than £700m in the last 12 months. The Preston-born 51-year-old, who began to dabble in stocks as a teenager when his grandmother bought him £500 worth of shares, widened the gap over his rival hedgies who all, except two, swelled their wealth. But the list lays bare a distinct lack of women occupying the most well-paid industry jobs at a time when gender equality in the City is under increased scrutiny. Only two women feature on the list and these imbalances have come under fire from gender campaign groups such as the Women‘s Equality Party which told MailOnline that today‘s revelations are ‘disappointing but unsurprising‘.

How to Invest Like Warren Buffett in 2019 and Beyond (The Motley Fool)
Warren Buffett is arguably the most respected investor of all time, and for good reason. Over his 54-year tenure as CEO of Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK-A) (NYSE:BRK-B), Buffett has delivered annualized returns of 20.5% for investors as of mid-2019, more than twice the pace of the S&P 500 over the same period. And he’s done it without applying any extraordinarily complex methods. In fact, Warren Buffett’s investment style is surprisingly simple, and while it’s not likely that you’re going to replicate Buffett’s long-term performance in your own portfolio, you can certainly learn how he invests and apply the same principles to your investment strategy.

U.S. Life Insurers Continue to Reduce Hedge Fund Investments (HedgeCo.net)
(HedgeCo.Net) For a third straight year, the U.S. insurance industry as a whole pulled back from hedge fund investments, by roughly $2 billion in 2018 to $14.4 billion, with the life/annuity segment reporting a year-over-year reduction of more than 18%, the largest among the major industry segments, according to an AM Best special report. The new Best’s Special Report, titled, “Life Insurers Continue to Reduce Hedge Fund Investments,” states that the life/annuity segment cut its hedge fund holdings to $5.8 billion in 2018 from $7.0 billion in the previous year, and from $14.2 billion in 2015. The property/casualty segment also shrank its hedge fund investments for a third year, pulling back 7.6% to $8.1 billion in 2018 from $8.8 billion in 2017.

Epstein’s Accusers Urge U.S. Judge to Keep Him Jailed Until Sex Trafficking Trial (Reuters)
NEW YORK (Reuters) – Two women who say they are victims of sexual misconduct by American financier Jeffrey Epstein on Monday urged a U.S. judge to keep him in jail while he awaits trial on charges of sex trafficking dozens of underage girls. “He’s a scary person,” one of the women, Courtney Wild, told U.S. District Judge Richard Berman in federal court in Manhattan. Wild and another accuser, Annie Farmer, spoke at the end of a hearing in which prosecutors argued that Epstein, 66, posed an “extraordinary risk of flight” and danger to the community and must remain in jail. Epstein, who has pleaded not guilty, has asked to be allowed to live under house arrest with armed guard at his expense in his mansion on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, which is valued at $77 million. The hedge fund manager had a social circle that over the years has included Donald Trump before he became U.S. president, former President Bill Clinton and Britain’s Prince Andrew.

SS&C GlobeOp Hedge Fund Performance Index at 1.67 per cent in June (Hedge Week)
Hedge fund flows as measured by the SS&C GlobeOp Capital Movement Index declined 1.28 per cent in July. “Given that the month of July typically produces net outflows, SS&C GlobeOp’s Capital Movement Index of -1.28 per cent for July 2019 should be viewed as a favourable result. For example, on a year-over-year basis, the -1.28 per cent reported for July 2019 is markedly better than the -1.92 per cent reported for the same period a year ago for July 2018, and in fact, represents the lowest net outflows for any calendar month of July in the past six years,” says Bill Stone, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, SS&C Technologies. “This strong reading shows investor confidence in hedge fund managers’ ability to produce attractive returns in the face of uncertainties in market direction, trade and central banking policies.”

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