Hedge Fund News: Ken Griffin, Thomas Steyer & George Soros

Citadel Outpaces Multistrategy Peers (InstitutionalInvestorsAlpha)
Kenneth Griffin’s Chicago-based hedge fund firm, Citadel, continues to deftly maneuver through the turbulence in global financial markets, which has confounded many multistrategy and macro hedge funds this year. In May alone, Citadel’s Wellington and Kensington Global Strategies multistrategy funds gained 1.5 percent. As a result, they are now up 5.4 percent for the year. Citadel’s Tactical Trading fund was up 1.45 percent in May and is up 8 percent…

Ken Griffin with computers

Net Ponzi Winners May Have to Pay Interest (CourthouseNews)
A trust that profited from Arthur Nadel’s multimillion-dollar Ponzi scheme may owe interest on its investments returns, the 11th Circuit ruled. Arthur Nadel was a hedge fund manager who ran a massive Ponzi scheme that collapsed in 2009. Over 10 years, Nadel raised at least $336 million from investors by misrepresenting the net profits of his funds with false monthly statements showing increases in investor accounts that did not exist. Instead, investor money was used to pay redemptions to earlier investors and management fees to Nadel.

An excerpt from Kate Kelly’s ‘The Secret Club That Runs the World’ (MSNBC)
Pierre Andurand was so comfortable with his $8 billion crude- oil position that he spent the first half of his day doing a hard- core workout with his personal trainer, casually reading the news on a Bloomberg computer terminal, and munching on lean pro-tein and toast at his London town house. It was May 5, 2011, Osama bin Laden had just been killed, and political instability in the Middle East seemed guaranteed to raise energy prices. Andurand made the short walk to his hedge-fund office at midday. Brent crude-oil futures, the commodity market based on petroleum drilled in Europe’s North Sea that he followed most closely, had been hovering in the low $120s that morning, which annoyed him…

Mired in Insider Trading Probes, Cohen Quietly Taps Boies as Counsel (FoxBusiness)
Maybe Steve Cohen isn’t out of the woods after all. FOX Business Network has learned the hedge fund titan has quietly retained famed defense attorney David Boies to help with legal issues Cohen continues to face involving the government’s crackdown on insider trading. Boies’s hiring has yet to be disclosed and the move is significant, according to people with direct knowledge of the matter. Cohen has been the target of criminal and civil probes involving insider trading for the past eight years and nearly a dozen people at his hedge fund SAC Capital have been implicated in the government probe.

Former Chief of Navy SEALs Finds Keystone XL an Easy Terror Target (BusinessWeek)
If reporting on the battle over the Keystone XL pipeline has taught us anything, it’s to expect the unexpected. Even so, we didn’t see this one coming. Hedge fund billionaire Tom Steyer, a climate change activist and staunch opponent of the prospective 1,179-mile pipeline from Alberta, Canada, to Cushing, Okla., has hired retired Navy SEAL chief David “Dave” Cooper to assess how vulnerable the Keystone XL might be to deliberate sabotage. In a 14-page report made public today (but redacted to keep it from being a playbook for aspiring terrorists), Cooper concludes that a small group of evildoers could easily cause a catastrophic spill of millions of gallons of diluted bitumen, or tar sands crude, from the Keystone XL.

Trading the Time Inc. spinoff (CNBC)

Hedge funds bet on euro decline (FT)
Hedge funds that specialise in anticipating central bank policy have ramped up their bets that the euro will fall as markets price in aggressive action from the European Central Bank to weaken the single currency. So-called global macro hedge funds, which invest in a wide range of assets in line with their forecasts and analysis of economic and market trends, have raised their net short position in the euro against the dollar from about 14 per cent of net assets to about 18 per cent during the past month, according to data compiled by Lyxor, a $21bn hedge fund investor. Reversing the euro’s appreciation has become a top priority for the ECB as it battles to prevent the eurozone falling into a dangerous deflationary spiral.

Who are the big winners from Markit’s IPO? (eFinancialNews)
A group of investment banks, hedge funds and individuals are set to collectively earn more than $1.3 billion from Markit’s initial public offering, according to new filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission yesterday. The London-based group, run by chief executive and founder Lance Uggla, plans to sell 45.7 million shares via a flotation on Nasdaq, priced at between $23 and $25 each. At the top end of the range, the 13-year-old company would be valued at $4.47 billion. The Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board has expressed interest in buying up to a third of the offering, valued at $450 million, according to the filling. But of greater interest is the list of investors planning to sell down their stakes. Markit will not issue new shares during the float, instead existing investors will reduce their stakes.

The unglamorous life of hedge fund startups (HartfordBusiness)
Situated on the 46th floor of a gleaming office tower in lower Manhattan, Mike Winston is running his hedge fund empire. But he’s no Gordon Gekko. Missing is the sleek trading floor with its supercharged technology and legions of shouting traders. Picture instead: About 250 square feet of rented office space with four computer monitors and an intern. “I think we’re scrappy,” says the 37 year-old Winston, who launched Sutton View Capital in September 2013. “We’re punching above our weight.”

V.A. Candidate Faced Criticism For Hedge Fund Link (Finalternatives)
A possible nominee to lead the troubled U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs could face tough questions about his ties to a hedge fund. President Barack Obama is considering Delos Cosgrove, CEO of the Cleveland Clinic, for the job, which opened last week with the resignation of Secretary Eric Shinseki following an internal review that found an agency rife with mismanagement, treatment delays and falsified records. But Cosgrove, an Air Force veteran and heart surgeon, comes with a bit of controversy of his own. Cosgrove’s links to hedge fund Foundation Medical Partners were criticized in 2005. The fund invested in companies that conducted studies at the clinic.

Hedge fund shorts Saga shares (Telegraph)
One of the world’s biggest hedge funds is betting against Saga in the wake of the company’s high-profile flotation that has left hundreds of thousands of private investors out of pocket. GLG Partners, which is part of Man Group, has taken a short position of 0.61pc in the over-50s insurance and holidays group, according to a filing with the Financial Conduct Authority. Funds borrow stock to take short positions so that they profit when a share price falls. Saga’s shares have dropped almost 7pc below the float price since unconditional trading in the company began last Thursday. As a result of that fall, retail shareholders, the majority of whom were Saga customers, will have seen almost £19m wiped off the value of their holdings.

President Obama ‘a mouthpiece of George Soros’ (PressTV)
On the second day of his four-day European tour, Obama on Wednesday met Ukrainian president-elect Petro Poroshenko in Warsaw. The two discussed the unrest in southern and eastern Ukraine and the reunion of the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea with the Russian Federation. “Listening to President Obama’s speech in Warsaw, it was quite clear that he’s basically nothing more than a mouthpiece for the George Soros manipulators and infiltrators around the world,” said Wayne Madsen, an author and syndicated columnist in Washington.

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