Hedge Fund News: Klarman, Buffett, Rogers, Lampert, Ackman…

BAUPOST GROUPSeth Klarman’s Margin of Safety (Frank Voisin)

Seth Klarman’s classic Margin of Safety is the most concise introductory value investing book you can find. Or not find. It is famously rare. I had to track down a copy to read at a public library in New Zealand, after hunting for two years. Guess what? It was worth the effort.

Howard & Warren Buffett on Gold (Resource Investor)

In a recent article in Fortune, Warren Buffett reiterated his well-known view on money. Far less celebrated, however, is the discerning view of his father, Howard Buffett, expounded in a brilliant speech in 1948 while serving as a four-term congressman from Omaha. In contrast to his son WB, HB insightfully considers the importance of money in society beyond its role as a means of economic calculation and payment. I’ll return to this point, but first, the Fortune article requires our attention.

Steven Cohen, George Soros, John Paulson Bought New Stocks (Forbes)

Steven Cohen, George Soros and John Paulson are three of the most formidable investors alive today. All three of them added to one of their major holdings so far in 2012. Steven Cohen of SAC Capital Advisors added Dynavax Tech Cp (DVAX), George Soros of Soros Fund Management LLC added Acacia Research (ACTG) and John Paulson of Paulson & Co. added Novagold Resources (NG).

Eddie Lampert Stages A Comeback (CNN Money)

Not all Wall Streeters are being forced to clip coupons or go without a dishwasher this year. Last week, Eddie Lampert and his family closed on a $40 million home on a private island outside of Miami. The 17,000 square-foot mansion on 2.7 acres has an “arrival court” with a long white driveway that leads you around formal hedges (not the financial kind) and a reflection pool to the front door. It’s nice.

Falcone Is Still A Billionaire, Despite Troubles (Reuters)

Hedge fund manager Philip Falcone started 2012 with a series of setbacks, but there is one thing he can still count on this year: membership in the hyper-exclusive club of the world’s richest people. The 49-year-old investor clocked in at No. 1,075 on Forbes’ 2012 list of the world’s billionaires with a net worth of $1.1 billion, the magazine reported this week.

“Dr Doom” Sees Iran-Israel Clash, Says Buy Precious Metals (Reuters)

Political risk in the Middle East has increased significantly with war between Iran and Israel almost inevitable, and precious metals and equities investments offer some safety, Swiss money manager and long-term bear Marc Faber said on Tuesday.

Jim Rogers Explains What All The China Bears Are Getting Wrong (Business Insider)

Business Insider recently spoke with investment guru Jim Rogers on a myriad of issues. Yesterday, we shared with you Roger’s thoughts on commodities and the U.S. economy.

Bill Ackman on Fast Food Industry, McDonald’s, Amazon and Borders (Value Walk)

Insight on his investment in the fast food business, with William A. Ackman, Pershing Square Capital Management, who says he is no longer invested in McDonald’s but has respect for what the company has done. Ackman discusses his previous investment in Borders, Amazon’s dominance in the e-book

Chasing Buffett (The Reformed Broker)

One of the time honored traditions of the financial media and blogosphere is to obsess over each quarterly 13F from Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway.  Should we sell what Warren is selling and buy what he’s buying?  What sectors is he concentrating on, which positions is he adding to and where is he trimming?

SS&C Offers 517 Million Pounds for GlobeOp, Trumping TPG Bid (Bloomberg)

SS&C Technologies Holdings Inc. (SSNC) offered to buy GlobeOp Financial Services SA (GO/) for about 517 million pounds ($816 million), trumping TPG Capital Inc.’s bid for the hedge-fund administrator. SS&C offered 485 pence a share in cash, the Windsor, Connecticut-based developer of software for financial firms said in a statement today. TPG, the private-equity firm run by David Bonderman, bid 435 pence on Feb. 1.

Strong February Helps Hedge Funds To Best Start To A Year Since 2000 (HFM Week)

Equity focused hedge fund strategies were the stars of a strong February, as 2012’s second consecutive up month helped the industry to its strongest start to a calendar year since 2000, HFR data has revealed. Added to January’s 2.74% boost, the HFRI Fund Weighted Composite Index’s jump of 2.14% in February has pushed gains year-to-date to almost 5%.

Hedge Fund Net Inflows Hit $20B In Feb (FINalternatives)

Despite their less-than-stellar results in 2011, hedge funds saw net asset inflows of US$20 billion in February. The Eurekahedge Hedge Fund Index was up 2.06% for the month, buoyed by optimism about European debt and the global economy. It’s up 4.30% for the year, its strongest start in 12 years. The MSCI World Index gained 4.55%, as the appetite for risk persisted for a second consecutive month while the asset-weighted Mizuho-Eurekahedge Index was up 1.64% in February.

SEC’s Gallagher Says Some Advisers Shouldn’t Face Registration (Bloomberg)

Private-fund advisers serving the most sophisticated clients should be exempt from the full force of registration requirements under the Dodd-Frank Act, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Daniel Gallagher said. As private-equity and hedge funds prepare to meet a March 30 registration deadline, the SEC should consider letting some avoid parts of the requirement, Gallagher said today in remarks prepared for a conference in Arlington, Virginia. Gallagher, one of two Republicans among the SEC’s five commissioners, used the example of advisers who don’t use leverage and market their services “only to sophisticated and institutional investors.”

Suffolk County Seeks to Avoid Takeover Fate That Befell Neighboring Nassau (Bloomberg)

By declaring a fiscal emergency, Suffolk County (8320MF) Executive Steve Bellone is laying the groundwork for cuts to programs to avoid a New York state takeover of its finances, a fate suffered by neighboring Nassau County. Suffolk, where hedge fund billionaires John Paulson and George Soros have homes in the Hamptons beach towns, is facing a three-year deficit of $530 million after sales- and property-tax revenue failed to keep pace with rising costs of employee benefits and social services. Bellone declared the emergency two days ago, saying “painful steps” were needed.

European Distressed Hedge Funds Thwarted By LTRO (Reuters)

Hedge funds stalking distressed assets in Europe may be left with slim pickings after a trillion-euro cash injection from the European Central Bank eased the pressure on banks to dump some of their weaker holdings. Many fund managers, who have been scenting prey since the credit crisis began, had been hoping European banks would sell off assets such as corporate loans and project finance debt to comply with Basel III global capital adequacy rules, the thrust of which comes into force next year.

Bold Hedge Funds Mull Risky Greek Debt Battle (Reuters)

Some hedge funds are refusing to join Greece’s bond swap, threatening legal action if the government does not come up with a better offer and complicating efforts to restructure the country’s debt. Greece’s private creditors have until Thursday night to decide whether to take part in a bond swap, aimed at avoiding a disorderly default that would drag other countries further into the euro zone crisis.

Up-And-Down February For Fortress (FINalternatives)

Despite posting gains in most of its hedge funds, including its largest, Fortress Investment Group will not remember February fondly. The New York-based alternative investments giant saw its Asia Macro Fund add 1.5% and its flagship macro fund 0.8% last month, it said in a regulatory filing yesterday. Those funds are now up 3.76% and 4.71% on the year, respectively.

Hedge Fund Millionaires Among Manhattan Madam’s Clients (FINalternatives)

A New York City woman accused of running a brothel boasted a client list full of “hedge funders” and other millionaires and billionaires. Anna Gristina spent 15 years as a madam on the Upper Easy Side, prosecutors allege, catering only to those with at least $1 million in the bank. Some had much more, according to the New York Post, which reports that her clients included “two billionaires.”

Guess Which Hot Shot Hedge Fund Manager Is New To Forbes’ Billionaires List (Business Insider)

Hedge fund hot-shot David Einhorn, the founder of Greenlight Capital, is finally on the Forbes’ “The World’s Billionaires List.”

Bill Ackman Reveals The Worst Investment He’s Made (Business Insider)

Pershing Square founder and famed activist investor Bill Ackman was on CNBC this morning, discussing his various investments and the state of economy.

Lighthouse Partners Up With 361 Capital (HFN)

Florida-based fund-of-hedge funds Lighthouse Partners has entered into a strategic partnership with 361 Capital, an alternative investments provider.

eVestment|HFN Q4 2011 Administrator Survey (HFN)

The Q4 2011 survey includes data from over 60 of the world’s largest fund administrators, and does an excellent job of representing the entire marketplace.

The Warren Buffett of… (Frank Voisin)

Santangel’s Review has an awesome round-up of people nicknamed The Warren Buffett of…

Mason Hawkins Buying a Highway Near You (Value Walk)

Mason Hawkins, the legendary value investor who is CEO of LongLeaf Partners is finding value in distressed European equities. LongLeaf’s International fund (MUTF:LLINX) has a 40% allocation the countries of France, Ireland and Spain. Ireland is a country which another great investor, Wilbur Ross is particularly bullish on. Seth Klarman has reportedly being buying securities in Europe, including Spain.

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.

Hedge Funds Mum About ETF Use (Hedge Co. Net)

Hedge fund managers are the third-biggest institutional users of exchange-traded funds and exchange-traded products, but they’re reluctant to talk about it. That’s because pension fund, endowment and foundation clients won’t be happy if the hedge fund managers they are hiring for their exceptional investment skills and for which they are paying high fees — 2% for management and 20% for performance — are relying too much on lower-cost index-based products like ETFs and ETPs.

100 Women in Hedge Funds and Stanford to donate proceeds of conference to philanthropy (Opalesque)

Global practitioner-driven non-profit organization 100 Women in Hedge Funds, with more than 10,000 members comprising alternative investment management investors and professionals, has partnered with the Stanford Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society and Stanford Social Innovation Review to co-host the 100WHF-Stanford PACS Conference on March 23 this year to be held at the Boston Harbor Hotel in Boston, Massachusetts.

6 Degrees Of Louis Bacon And Kevin Bacon (Forbes)

This chart appears in the Mar. 26 “Billionaires” edition of Forbes magazine. How hard is it really, to connect Kevin Bacon to other actors? Many have been asked to accomplish the task while playing “Six Degrees Of Kevin Bacon,” a game designed to pass the time on long subway rides and awkward road trips. IMDB lists 73 titles under the ubiquitous actor’s name. And what, you get six moves to connect him to Diane Keaton?

Hedge Fund Manager Hovde Enters U.S. Senate Race (Wausau Daily Herald)

The Republican race for the U.S. Senate nomination has just gotten more crowded. Hedge fund manager Eric Hovde announced his candidacy Thursday in Dane, and planned additional campaign stops in Milwaukee, Green Bay and Eau Claire. A native of Madison, Hovde has lived the past 24 years in Washington, D.C.

Hedge Funds Strong Start, Consultants Influence, Goldmans HF Wind-Down And More (Reuters Hedge World)

SEC Form D filings for March 7, 2012 (Reuters Hedge World)

Deals Of The Day — Mergers And Acquisitions (Reuters)

HFMWeek Daily Snapshot – 8 March (HFM Week)

Daily US Opening News And Market Re-Cap: March 8 (Zero Hedge)

Frontrunning: March 8 (Zero Hedge)

Thursday 7atseven: Payroll Previews (Abnormal Returns)

Morning Read: Greece’s Three Cheers For ‘Involvement’ (Barron’s)

Hot Links: Bring It. (The Reformed Broker)

Morning News: March 8, 2012 (Crossing Wall Street)

10 Thursday AM Reads (The Big Picture)