Gartman On Ackman: "We Feel Very Sad For Him To Have Fallen This Hard"

Tyler Durden's picture

For today's moment of blizzard-refuge Zen, we bring you the following excerpt from Gartman's daily letter in which the "world renowned commodity expert" takes on Bill Ackman over his Valeant capitulation and $4 billion loss. Because people who live in glass houses, and invest their retirement accounts, do throw stones in their newsletters.

We have focused attention for the past year and one half upon the demise of and the unwise handling of the stock in Valeant Pharmaceuticals by the hedge fund community. We never understood the business plan adopted by this company and we never understood the stock’s sky-rocket move higher from ’12-mid’15 when it rose from $40/share to just “north” of $260. It made no sense to us then and when the stock fell from $240/share to $200/share in the early autumn of ’15 we argued then that the “There-is-never-just-one-cockroach” Theory was almost certainly to be in effect and that VRX’ shares were headed toward eventual failure.


When it gapped from $150/share to $120/share we argued again that lower price would prevail and that Mr. Ackman… and others following his lead into the company’s shares… was making a possible careerending decision when he averaged down on the trade. As our old friend, Paul Tudor Jones, has always said, “Losers average losers.” Further, when Mr. Ackman argued for a seat… or seats… on the company’s Board of Directors, thus making it almost impossible to sell his shares without doing even more damage to the company’s stock for sales then had to be made quite public, we argued that this was a truly ill-advised decision on his part and that it would serve only to tell the market that his block of shares remained as over-head supply that eventually shall have to be sold, likely in a forced manner.


Yesterday, Mr. Ackman announced that he had indeed sold his remaining shares in VRX and has asked to have himself and an associate released from their Board seats. This was a very public capitulation on his part and quite honestly we feel very sad for him to have fallen this hard and this publically for no one deserves that sort of ignominy. Nonetheless, it was his selling, we are certain, that drove the stock down in the course of the past two weeks from $17/share to under $12. Now he is gone and the market knows that his shares have been distributed into the stronger… or at least broader… hands of other investors. There is no longer a huge block of shares dangling like the sword of Damocles over the market’s head.


Ackman was not alone in this trade. Other skillful and formerly wise hedge fund managers followed him into Valeant and followed him all the way down. But we are rather convinced that those “hedgies” are out now that Mr. Ackman is out so perhaps a “punt” from the long side is reasonable. The coast is now clearer. Lessons have been learned… we hope.

And now, back to oil, which at last check is trading above $44.

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1980XLS's picture

At least Ackman has had a few winners over the last few years.

FrozenGoodz's picture

But that TrumpDontCare plan though?

Logan 5's picture
Logan 5 (not verified) FrozenGoodz Mar 14, 2017 8:04 AM

the pinata calling the kettle black.


Dennis [the Menace] makes better decisions than Gartman

Okienomics's picture

Gartman should have ended his life when oil was at $39.99 so he could be right.

Logan 5's picture
Logan 5 (not verified) Okienomics Mar 14, 2017 8:08 AM

The wedgie they gave him back in the 5th grade is still stuck way up there. To his credit, he did manage to wiggle out of the locker though.

NoDebt's picture

Ackman got what he deserved on this one.  He went all religious about the value of this pile of lies and financial games called Valeant.  There is nothing more dangerous in investing than a "true believer".


shamus001's picture

First signs of a Great Depression:

Billionairs to Paupers.... This show's just begun!

8774_44887's picture
8774_44887 (not verified) shamus001 Mar 14, 2017 9:54 AM

I'm making over $7k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life. This is what I do...

fx's picture

there is just a minor difference between ackman and gartman. one gets a billion $ hit at once. the other dies by a thousand minor cuts. Oh, and a second one: Ackman is actually right more often than wrong. With Gartman, it's the other way around.

StackShinyStuff's picture

I was hoping for another actionable Gartman fade.  Maybe next time.

overbet's picture

Ackman's book Confidence Game is a good read. His work ethic is unmatched. Reading and analyzing hundereds of thousands of boring ass SEC filings is no easy task.

Erek's picture

He (Gartman) does the work of three men -- Larry, Curly and Moe!

SheepDog-One's picture

I'm all for just letting Oshitcare just collapse within months instead.

FrozenGoodz's picture

Thus the depth of the GOP's considerations for repeal

BarkingCat's picture

They should enforce all provisions fully right now.

It will help ensuring that its demise is not stretched out and softened.

NugginFuts's picture

Who is this "we"? The rest of us are laughing our asses off. 

espirit's picture

Live by the Sword, Die by falling on the Sword.

VD's picture

the ignoble on the ignoble; at least one of them has actual AUM & is a world-class hf swindler.

BullyBearish's picture

Enough of these X-mans...

Muddy1's picture

I keep wondering why I see his mug on ZH.

Logan 5's picture
Logan 5 (not verified) Muddy1 Mar 14, 2017 8:06 AM

cuz if it's juice it's noose

H. Perowne's picture

Because an oracle that is always wrong is just as useful as one that is always right.

BabaLooey's picture

Dennis is a financial pinata~

ZH throws him up like fresh meat to us lions of the trading world to whack away at him with everything from fungo bats to cudgels.

It's fun making fun of an oaf.

Especially Gartman, whose own prose makes him seem best....

asinine at worst..........

BorisTheBlade's picture

Stellar track record. No one was able to be so consistently full of shit and be so confident about it at the same time.

sessinpo's picture

What a greaet idea, A Gartman coffee mug. We're gonna be rich I tell ya, rich. It'll be yuge.

Ink Pusher's picture

Gartman is Tyler's personal ZH "whipping boy", and for good reason.

MaxThrust's picture

Bullshit, the guys is a wanker and got what he deserves.

mily's picture

Does Dennis feel sorry for Ackman in yen terms?

DirkDiggler11's picture

If Fartman drops Ackman on his foot would it hurt ?

divingengineer's picture

I didn't know cockroaches could "feel" anything. 

E.F. Mutton's picture

Really?  Are they repossessing his trailer house?  Are his kids going hungry? Is he living under a bridge eating beanie weenies?

Didn't think so.  He gambled and lost.  My heart pumps piss for him.


DingleBarryObummer's picture

He has to settle for the 30' yacht instead of the 40', o noes!

What will the Sclaffenbergsteins think?

Logan 5's picture

he'll have to go for the cut rate clown to perform at Solomons bar mitzvah.

buzzsaw99's picture

nonsense. his dinghy is bigger than that.

DingleBarryObummer's picture

Yea, I thought maybe I low balled his dinghy.  I don't know much about being a seaman.

Mr.BlingBling's picture

"My heart pumps piss for him."

. Well, that's a keeper! But you owe me a new keyboard.

Berspankme's picture

He may be under a bridge eating a weenie but he did that when he was flush

buzzsaw99's picture one deserves that sort of ignominy.


nonsense. i can think of a few hundred maggots who deserve the same or worse.

DirkDiggler11's picture

Wow, some serious irony that Gartman would piss on Ackman's head and down his back in such a public way. Guess those two won't be mailing each other Hanukkah cards this year.

I am a Man I am Forty's picture

i feel so super duper sad for him in the most crocodile tears sort of way


Made in Occupied America's picture

When you invest paper money, you can talk all you want.

Last of the Middle Class's picture

All of those pharma guys know they have been in a silent "i won't tell if you don't tell" partnership with the FDA under obamacare. They have purposely priced their products as high as possible without any regard for the consumer. They also know the price hike story is hidden in every wholesaler's price history across the US and they are one presidential investigation away from having to end the raping of the healthcare system through artificially high pharmaceutical prices and possibly doing time for collusion. One banker feeling sorry for another?  Not possible. One banker not wanting to go down because another one did and he's a bit nervous. Priceless.

cn13's picture

All great traders will eventually go broke if they continue trading long enough.

The desire for even more money that is not needed overrides everything else.