Pershing Square

Largest US Pension Fund Suffers Worst Annual Return Since Financial Crisis Due To Heavy Stock Losses

While we have often documented the dramatic underperformance by the hedge fund industry over the past decade, today we learn that "vanilla" asset managers were also hurt over the past year in which the S&P went nowhere. Case in point: Calpers, the largest U.S. public pension fund which as the WSJ reports posted its lowest annual gain since the last financial crisis due to heavy losses in stocks.

Herbalife: Media Materially Misstates FTC Outcome, Icahn Files Potentially Questionable Statement with SEC

In the classic "pyramid" scheme, participants attempt to make money solely by recruiting new participants into the program. The hallmark of these schemes is the promise of sky-high returns in a short period of time for doing nothing other than handing over your money and getting others to do the same. But, like most news that goes out incorrectly, nobody noticed the retraction and nobody cared. Here’s what Dow Jones’ official retraction of the morning’s news looked like when it was issued later in the morning, with Herbalife stock already trading up nearly 15%

Pershing Square Lays Off More Than 10% Of Employees

Pershing Square, one of the worst performing hedge funds of 2015 and 2016, has laid off eight lower-level employees this week, the WSJ reports. The cuts, which largely involve back-office employees in technology and investor services, amount to more than 10% of the activist hedge fund’s staff.

The Top 100 Hedge Funds Of 2016 According To Barron's

Here is the table of the Top 100 best performing hedge funds of 2016 ranked by their 3-year compound return, with an average return of 16.98% (ranging from 30% to 12%), outperforming the S&P's 3 year return of 15.13%.

Dennis Gartman Mocks Bill Ackman's "Demise"; Tries To Understand Bitcoin, Fails

"This is an enormous tragedy of huge proportions being played out here before our eyes. Mr. Ackman’s investors did not deserve this fate, but they are being forced to live it nonetheless. How truly sad. He averaged down… again… and again…and again… and again. His eventual demise is a lesson to us all. Would that we learn from it: This is Greek tragedy of the saddest kind. No one deserves this fate"

What The Biggest Hedge Funds Did In Q1: The Full 13-F Summary

While far less attention is being paid to hedge fund 13F filings, which show a stale representation of equity long stakes among the hedge fund community as of 45 days prior, than in years gone by as a result of increasingly poor performance by the 2 and 20 crowd, they still remain closely watched source of investment ideas but mostly to find out what the new cluster ideas and hedge fund hotel stocks are at any given moment. Here are the highlights from the latest round of 13F filings.

Bill Ackman Releases Ghastly Portfolio Update; Defends Valeant, Other Money-Losing Investments

Ackman just released his disastrous Q1 Portfolio Update, in which he made zero macro comments, and instead spent the entire letter defending his various investments such as Air Products, Canadian Pacific (of which he sold 30% of its position on April 22), Fannie Mae, his Herbalife short which recently has cost him even more hundreds of millions in losses, Howard Hughes Company, Mondelez (where he also sold 20 million share on March 16), Nomad Foods, Platform Specialty Products, Restaurant Brands, and Zoetis (where he sold a 16.85mm share block on May 9 taking his stake from 8.6% to 5.0%). Why all the liquidations? Because of Valeant of course, which remains Ackman's biggest headache, and to whose defense he dedicated the most time.

Wall Street Is Falling Off A Cliff (And The Bottom Is A Long Way Down)

For the past 50 or so years, the quickest way for a sharp young sociopath to get rich has been to join an investment bank or hedge fund. The former were riding a “regulatory capture” gravy train that became ever-more-lucrative as new government agencies morphed into subsidiaries of Wall Street. Said another way, when financial assets are being artificially inflated by excessive liquidity, it’s easy to make money by shuffling this ever-appreciating inventory back and forth, and to look very smart while doing so. But those days are ending with a bang...

As The Sohn Conference Begins, This Is How Last Year's Hedge Fund Picks Did

Moments ago, the 2016 edition of the Sohn Investment Conference started, a feeding frenzy for traders and hedge fund managers such as Gundlach, Einhorn and Chanos who descend on this popular annual "round table" to pitch their best and worst ideas. As always, the moment a company's name is mentioned in a bullish or bearish context, its stock is sure to surge or slump, as the headline-hungry algos immediate pounce in the current reactionary market environment. But is following the advice of these hedge fund gurus such a good idea? 

"It Been Horrendous" - Investor Tries To Pull Cash From Valeant-Heavy Fund, Gets Shares Instead

When Tom Bentley tried to pull his money from a mutual fund troubled by its large stake in Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc., he instead received shares in a Springfield, Mo. auto-parts retailer. Sequoia Fund Inc. sent the retired computer hardware engineer about 5% of his money in cash and the rest was stock in one company–O’Reilly Automotive Inc. Mr. Bentley said he sold the shares as soon as they appeared in his account on April 7, but they had already dropped in value. "It has been pretty horrendous," Mr. Bentley said.

Stocks Rebound In Calm Trading On Back Of Stronger Crude, Dollar

Unlike yesterday's overnight session, which saw some subtantial carry FX volatility and tumbling European yields in the aftermath of the TSY's anti-inversion decree, leading to a return of fears that the next leg down in markets is upon us, the overnight session has been far calmer, assisted in no small part by the latest China Caixin Services PMI, which rose from 51.2 to 52.2. Adding to the overnight rebound was crude, which saw a big bounce following yesterday's API inventory data, according to which crude had its biggest inventory draw in 2016, resulting in WTI rising as high as $37.15 overnight

Frontrunning: March 24

  • Belgium hunts 'third man' after Islamic State bombings (Reuters)
  • Number of Attackers, Key Details of Brussels Assaults Remain Unclear (WSJ)
  • Surviving Paris attacks suspect wants to return to 'explain himself': lawyer (Reuters)
  • Brussels Suicide Bomber Slipped Terror Net (WSJ)
  • Dollar rise hits commodities as Fed talks of tightening (Reuters)