Hedge Fund News: Carl Icahn, Alan Howard, Adage Capital

Icahn ‘Hopeful’ Trump Wins Presidency on Economic Stance (Bloomberg)
Investor Carl Icahn said he is “very hopeful” that Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump will win in November, praising the nominee’s economic policy speech on Monday. “If he sticks with that economic theme, he should definitely win hands down because I don’t know why you wouldn’t vote for him,” Icahn said Tuesday in a live phone-in interview with CNBC. Icahn, who endorsed Trump in September, reiterated his support for the candidate, while acknowledging his fellow billionaire has “made mistakes” — particularly last week. He said he talks to Trump and expresses his views, but didn’t join the official advisory group. Icahn said he wants to keep his options open to potentially fund a political action committee addressing his business and economic concerns.

Most Popular Stocks Among Hedge Funds

Brevan Howard’s Main Fund Down 1 Percent In Year To End-July – Sources (Reuters)
Leading European hedge fund Brevan Howard‘s main fund was down 1 percent in the year to the end of July, two sources said, handing back gains made after Britain’s vote to leave the European Union. British billionaire Alan Howard‘s $16 billion (£12.32 billion) fund, the performance of which is closely held, had gained 1 percent on June 24, the day after the referendum, to take its year-to-date performance at that point to 0.45 percent. Howard’s main fund, which uses macroeconomic analysis to bet on a variety of securities, has struggled in recent years, losing 1.99 percent in 2015 to post its second consecutive year of losses.

Adage Capital Trailing Stocks Says ‘Smart Beta’ Distorts Market (Bloomberg)
For the first time since it started 15 years ago, Adage Capital Management is trailing the stock market. One reason for the rare underperformance, according to the almost $28 billion hedge fund: The rise of factor-based investing. Adage Capital, founded by two former money managers at Harvard University’s endowment, gained 1.1 percent in the 12 months ending June 30, according to its quarterly letter, the first underperformance for a fiscal year. The S&P 500 Index returned 4 percent in that period. The Boston-based hedge fund, which takes long and short positions on stocks, said factor-oriented investing creates a wedge between the price of equities and their fundamental values.

Billionaire Klarman Slams Trump, Vows To Work For Clinton (Reuters)
Billionaire hedge fund manager Seth Klarman said on Wednesday he would work to get Hillary Clinton elected president of the United States because he finds recent comments by Donald Trump “shockingly unacceptable.” “His words and actions over the last several days are so shockingly unacceptable in our diverse and democratic society that it is simply unthinkable that Donald Trump could become our president,” Klarman said of the Republican presidential nominee. The president and chief executive of The Baupost Group told Reuters in an emailed statement that Trump’s suggestion “that the election will be rigged is particularly dangerous.” “I will continue to find ways to support Hillary Clinton and defeat Donald Trump,” he said.

The Bill Ackman Problem Everyone Forgot About is Coming Back To Bite Him and Valeant (Business Insider)
And now some bad news for billionaire Bill Ackman, the founder of the hedge fund Pershing Square. Valeant Pharmaceuticals, the drug company whose 90% stock-drop disaster has been pulling down Ackman’s portfolio since October, announced on Monday that three executives would leave. The departing executives were of no small importance at Valeant. Pavel Mirovsky was the head of the company’s Europe business, Laurie Little was the head of media relations, and finally Robert Chai-Onn was the company’s general counsel.

Anandar Capital Fund Liquidates After Partner Disagreement (Bloomberg)
Anandar Capital Management, the hedge fund started by former Magnetar money managers Min Htoo and Jordan Teramo, is returning money to investors, according to a letter obtained by Bloomberg. The liquidation of the New York-based firm is due to a disagreement between the partners, said a person with knowledge of the situation, without providing details. The person asked not to be named because the information is private. “It is with thoughtful resolution that I inform you of my decision to conclude our Anandar effort,” Htoo, the firm’s chief investment officer, wrote in the July 8 letter. “Though this has been an exceedingly difficult decision to make, I have conviction that it is the correct path as your fiduciary.” Teramo declined to comment on the closing, as did Htoo.

$9 BILLION HEDGE FUND: There’s One Big Problem With Netflix (Business Insider)
Netflix has a problem: It’s you. That’s according to Crispin Odey, one of London’s biggest hedge fund managers. Voracious consumers are watching Netflix’s content more quickly than the online streaming service can replenish it, Odey said during his hedge fund’s second-quarter phone call, a 53-minute recording of which was obtained by Business Insider. Odey’s observation is interesting since Netflix already produces a lot. This year alone, the company plans to release 600 hours of content, which would take 25 days to binge-watch straight through. Odey’s $9.3 billion hedge fund held a short position in Netflix as of the July phone call, meaning that the firm would earn money if the stock price drops.