Hedge Fund News: Bill Ackman, David Einhorn, John Kinnucan, Ray Dalio…

PERSHING SQUAREAckman Says He Will Be Patient on J.C. Penney Turnaround (Bloomberg)

Pershing Square Capital Management LP’s William Ackman, the activist hedge fund manager, said he’s willing to be patient as J.C. Penney Co. pursues a turnaround. “It takes time to get new product,” Ackman said today on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” program. “The question is how quickly is the customer going to understand the new pricing and the promotion? That will take some time.”

Bill Ackman Defends Current SEC Rules, Takes Swipe at Carl Icahn (Value Walk)

Bill Ackman, CEO of Pershing Square Capital, spoke at a conference today in New Orleans, hosted by Tulane Law School. Ackman gave an interview, which we posted earlier today. Reports at the conference confirmed that Ackman had a strong opinion on current SEC rules. According to current rules, investors must file a statement with the organization if they acquire more then a 5% stake within 10 days. The SEC is thinking about changing the rule to make the period far shorter than the 10 day limit.

Analyst Kinnucan Ordered Moved to New York for Insider Trial (Bloomberg)

Broadband Research LLC founder John Kinnucan was ordered to be transported to New York to face trial for insider trading after a judge found him unable to meet the terms of his $5 million bail. U.S. District Judge Deborah Batts in New York today said that a lawyer for Kinnucan, 54, who was indicted for insider trading and securities fraud, told her that his client was unable to satisfy the conditions of his bail. The lawyer asked that Kinnucan be moved to the federal courthouse in Manhattan by the U.S. Marshals Service, the judge said.

If You’re Not Reading This Ray Dalio Profile We Probably Can’t Be Friends. (The Reformed Broker)

Stop whatever you’re doing and read this excellent profile of Ray Dalio (Bridgewater), the most successful asset manager alive.  He is a machine that generates alpha and The Economist perfectly captures what makes him so fascinating:

Hedge Fund ETFs: Hedge Funds for the Rest of Us? (Daily Finance)

The ivory tower academicians can espouse the efficient market theory until the cows come home, but here in the real world, there’s no question that you can beat the market — at least if you’re invested in an average hedge fund. According to Greenwich Alternative Investments, which has been tracking hedge fund performance since 1988, the average hedge fund has a compounded annual growth rate of 13% over the past 23 years, as compared to 7% for the S&P 500.

China Hedge Fund Gains On Domestic Bets (Hedge Funds Review)

Hedge fund CSV Capital Partners sees Chinese domestic sectors rising even as economic growth slows. The fund backs companies with exposure to the Chinese consumer as retail sales continue to grow.

The Next George Soros…? (FX Street)

I don’t mean literally the next George Soros, but more the situation. George Soros is, of course, most commonly known for shorting England’s currency giving him the moniker “the man who broke the bank of England”. His investment profits during the 1992 UK Black Wednesday currency crisis made him over $1 billion. Essentially, he saw the weakness in the pound sterling and its government’s fiscal indecisiveness. I see something similar happening in the current EUR/JPY cross.

$GMCR Shares Tumble, David Einhorn Comments (Value Walk)

“With Green Mountain’s patents expiring this fall, Starbucks’ entry is part of the competitive onslaught hitting Green Mountain,” said hedge fund manager David Einhorn, who has been one of the most outspoken critics of Green Mountain. Green Mountain did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the Starbucks announcement.

Whitney Tilson ‘Howard Hughes is Super Cheap (Value Walk)

Whitney Tilson, T2 Partners managing partner, explains why realty company Howard Hughes is attractive now. “We think the book value is very conservatively stated,” he says. The Fast Money traders also discuss opportunities in the homebuilding space.

John Paulson Selling Delphi Automotive plc (DLPH) Stock (Value Walk)

According to a Form 4 filed with the SEC, Paulson sold  1,105,000 common shares of Delphi Automotive Plc at $31.96 per share. The form does not require Paulson to state the reason for the sale. In addition, it will not include any debt which Paulson may have sold.

Hedge Fund Tax Break May Come in Cantor Small Business Plan (Bloomberg)

A Republican proposal to give small businesses an extra 20 percent tax deduction may yield cuts for some multibillion-dollar hedge funds, law firms and other enterprises that create significant profits with few employees. Republicans hope to release details of the bill during the week of March 19, said Laena Fallon, a spokeswoman for Representative Eric Cantor, the House majority leader. Cantor told House members in a memo last month his plan would let “every” business with fewer than 500 employees deduct 20 percent of its profits.

Blackstone Tops Hedge Fund Investor List (Reuters)

Blackstone was the largest fund of hedge funds last year ahead of banking groups HSBC and UBS, according to a survey which showed that the total assets managed by these types of investors failed to grow amid criticisms of high fees. New York-based Blackstone Alternative Asset Management managed $39 billion in hedge fund assets as of Dec. 31, up 15 percent on the year, InvestHedge’s Billion Dollar Fund of Hedge Fund Club survey said.

Most Hedge Funds Gain But Paulson Loses Again (Reuters)

Most hedge funds had good news for their investors last month but not John Paulson, who told clients that one of his biggest portfolios lost money, again.

Goldman Begins Hedge Fund Wind-Down (WSJ)

Goldman Sachs began this month unwinding its investments in hedge funds to comply with the Volcker Rule’s ban on banks holding more than 3% of the assets of any single fund. The process will take more than two years. It will redeem up to 10% of its stakes in certain hedge funds each quarter over ten consecutive quarters, starting in March 2012 and ending in June 2014.

Kids Are The Ultimate Winners At Annual PE Vs. Hedge Fund Basketball Game (WSJ)

Not even the backing of coaches like former Knicks players John Wallace and Earl “The Pearl” Monroe could help private equity executives muster enough points to beat a squad of hedge fund players on the basketball court Wednesday night.

Breaking News: JPMorgan Prop Trader Prepares Otlet Capital Launch (HFM Week)

Former JPMorgan proprietary trader Douglas Ormond and Michael Schwartz, previously a partner at Normandy Hill Capital, have teamed up to establish a New York-based hedge fund firm called Otlet Capital Management, HFMWeek has learned. According to a source familiar with the plans, the pair will roll out its maiden offering, the Otlet Master Fund, in the second quarter of the year with over $100m made up of internal capital, along with commitments from friends and family and possibly seed providers and anchor investors.

PRESENTING: The Richest Hedge Fund Billionaires In The World (Business Insider)

Gracing this year’s Forbes Magazine’s “The World’s Billionaires List” are more than thirty hedge fund managers. This year, we have some new-comers to the list such as Greenlight Capital’s David Einhorn, Third Point’s Dan Loeb and Tiger Global’s Chase Coleman.

Activist Investor Charts Plan to Revitalize Yahoo (Deal Book)

Daniel S. Loeb is getting back into the activist arena. After spending years working behind the scenes to push for change, the hedge fund manager is once again openly admonishing management and battling a corporate board. The target: Yahoo.

Hedge Funds Gain 1.55% In February (AR)

The HedgeFund Intelligence Global Composite Index rose 1.55% in February (3.21% YTD). Once again, equity markets outperformed hedge funds, with the MSCI World Index (net) rising 4.88% for the month (10.15% YTD). Emerging market equity funds were the best performers globally with a gain of 3.65%.

AQR Finance Nerds Love Exxon, Chevron (Market Watch)

Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM) is the top choice in AQR’s latest 13F portfolio. We wouldn’t have guessed this. At the end of last year, AQR disclosed to own more than $200 million worth of XOM shares. The stock is very popular among other hedge funds, but it is generally not their top choice. At the end of last year, there were 46 hedge funds with XOM positions in their 13F portfolios.

JPMorgan, Normandy Hill Vets Ready Hedge Fund (FINalternatives)

Another proprietary trading exile is joining forces with a Normandy Hill Capital veteran to launch a special situations hedge fund.

Hennessee: Hedge Funds Off To Best Start Since 2000 (FINalternatives)

Hedge funds continued to bounce back from their miserable 2011 with their best opening two months in more than a decade. The average hedge fund returned 1.72% last month, according to the Hennessee Hedge Fund Index. Added to January’s 2.3% gain, the average industry player is up 4.07% on the year.

King Street Rises After First Losing Year (FINalternatives)

King Street Capital Management suffered its first-ever loss last year. It’s trying to make sure that 2012 doesn’t produce its second.

Simons’ P.E. Shop Hires CalSTRS Manager (FINalternatives)

Renaissance Technologies founder James Simons has entrusted some of his billions to a former California State Teachers’ Retirement System private equity manager. Pascal Villiger has joined Medley Partners, the firm Simons set up eight years ago to manage his private equity investments, Private Equity Hub reports. Medley is based in San Francisco.

Former Frontpoint Exec Raising $1.5B For New Fund (HFN)

Stephen Czech at Connecticut-based hedge fund Frontpoint Partners is looking to raise as much as $1.5 billion for a new fund at his firm.

San Fran HF Manager Talks Seattle Arena Plans (HFN)

San Francisco hedge fund manager Chris Hansen told reporters at a press conference in Seattle that his plans for a sports/entertainment arena in his hometown will eventually come to fruition.

UCITS Hedge Fund Strategy Index continues positive run, up +0.99% in February 2012 (Hedge Co. Net)

After a good start into the year the UCITS Hedge Fund Strategy (HFS) Index was able to continue its positive performance with gains of +0.99% in February 2012. The first three days into the month already saw the broad index gain +0.34%, a trend that continued with additional gains of +0.30% in the second week of trading. The momentum nearly came to a halt in week three with gains of +0.10% and a loss of -0.16% in week four, but the positive trend gained the upper hand and added +0.38% to the monthly performance during the last three days of trading in February.

UK Hedge Fund Firm Expands US Operations (Hedge Co. Net)

Rule Financial, an independent provider of business consultancy, IT consultancy and IT services to the global hedge fund community, announced its acquisition of North American consultancy, Waterline Group. This strategic acquisition will accelerate Rule Financial’s growth in North America, providing an entry point to the Canadian market, and will complement the consultancy’s existing presence in New York. Waterline Group will be fully-absorbed into Rule Financial and will operate under the Rule Financial brand.

Daily US Opening News And Market Re-Cap: March 9 (Zero Hedge)

Deals Of The Day — Mergers And Acquisitions (Reuters)

Hedge Fund Tax Breaks In Cantor Plan, Dan Loebs Protest Song, New Czech Fund, Birinyi Bullish And More (Reuters Hedge World)

HFMWeek Daily Snapshot – 9 March (HFM Week)

Friday 7atseven: Payroll Previews (Abnormal Returns)

Morning Read: When Strong Jobs Data Could Hurt (Barron’s)

Morning News: March 9, 2012 (Crossing Wall Street)

10 Friday AM Reads (The Big Picture)