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HFObserver aggregates on a daily basis the most relevant news related to hedge funds/alternative investment firms and people moves.

Here is our news from approximately the last week.

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Tice Betting Virus Will Boost Gold, Silver

Prominent stock market bear David Tice has lined up a bullish bet on precious metals companies via his latest hedge fund.

Tice this month partnered with precious metals specialist Garic Moran to form Moran Tice Capital, which will invest on the premise that the coronavirus pandemic will lead to a prolonged global recession and higher inflation. The new entity, which has begun trading, taps a number of investors from TG Moran Capital, a hedge fund firm Moran had been running since 2016...

The new man to know for a job at Millennium Management

As we've written many times in recent months, hedge fund Millennium Management has been hiring. Bloomberg has now put a number to the recruitment spree: it says Millennium hired 100 people since the lockdown began in March.

Not all Millennium's new hires are portfolio managers. While the fund has been poaching newly promoted managing directors from Goldman Sachs, it's also been adding senior technologists like Louis Astolfi, who just joined as a senior program lead after two years as a COO for Barclays' cards and payments in the U.S.. And, it's hired a new head of recruiting.

The latter is Peter Norley, a former COO for the Americas at Credit Suisse Asset Management...

Hedge Funds Pay Up in U.S. to Poach From Rivals Stung by Turmoil

Izzy Englander sent his Millennium Management staff to work from home in early March. Since then, about 100 people have quietly joined the $42 billion hedge fund.

He’s not the only one snapping up talent as a deadly pandemic roils markets and upends offices. Dmitry Balyasny has recruited 12 portfolio managers at his eponymous firm this year, and Michael Gelband’s ExodusPoint Capital has added 20, according to people with knowledge of the matter. Across the industry, hiring by multimanager shops is on pace with last year’s robust level.

The spree by such firms, which...

Hedge Funds Plan Extreme Lengths to Protect Staff After Lockdown

One hedge fund may shut an office in Asia permanently and have employees work from home. Another may dramatically shrink its Manhattan headquarters.

Meanwhile, industry titan Millennium Management has a 50-point checklist for reopening offices that includes air filtration and an application process for staff who want to come in. Around town, rivals are discussing procuring infrared temperature scanners for entryways and plexiglass dividers to slide between desks...

Hedge Funds Target France as Short-selling Bans Lifted

A cluster of big name hedge funds have started betting against French companies, moving in after the lifting of a short-selling ban imposed earlier this year to calm financial markets, an analysis of regulatory filings showed.

France joined Italy, Spain, Belgium, Austria and Greece in dropping short-selling bans last week. They had banned the practice for many stocks two months ago to curb extreme stock market volatility caused by economic uncertainty that has resulted from the coronavirus lockdowns...

Hedge Fund Activist Is Shorting New York Office Stocks

An activist investor, known for buying shares in real estate companies and pushing for changes in hopes of boosting the stocks, is pursuing a new tack: betting against some of New York City’s biggest office owners.

Jonathan Litt’s hedge fund, Land & Buildings Investment Management, is taking short positions in Empire State Realty Trust, SL Green Realty and Vornado Realty Trust, according to a person familiar with the matter...

How Pierre Andurand Became Oil’s Comeback Kid

The French hedge fund manager was losing confidence and clients before a bet on an oil shock came good.

Pierre Andurand was starting to doubt himself.

In January, the French hedge fund manager had hoped a bet on diesel would be another blockbuster, the kind of trade that first made his name last decade, when he quickly climbed the ranks at Goldman Sachs and then at oil Trader Vitol before launching his own fund at the age of 30...

Judge Tosses Hedge Fund Visium’s Lawsuit Against Portfolio Manager’s Widow

A judge has dismissed a lawsuit brought by a hedge fund against the widow of one of the fund’s employees.

Visium Asset Management LP filed the complaint last year in New York Supreme Court under a new name, VA Management LP. The firm sought more than $100 million it paid to money manager Sanjay Valvani from 2007 through 2016, among other fees. It said in its complaint that “it would be fundamentally unfair for Valvani’s past illegal activity and his violation of his fiduciary duties to be permitted to perpetuate a super luxurious...

University of Vermont invests $15 million in hedge funds

University of Vermont and State Agricultural College, Burlington, made two new direct hedge fund investments totaling $15 million for its $499 million endowment pool.

The university's investment subcommittee approved a direct investment of $10 million in Baupost Value Partners IV, a hedge fund managed by Baupost Group, and $5 million to Overlook Partners Fund, a hedge fund managed by Overlook Investments Group, recently released minutes of its April 15 meeting show...

Insurers continue to reduce hedge fund exposures

For a fourth straight year, the US insurance industry has reduced its hedge fund investments, by USD2.6 billion in 2019 to USD11.9 billion, with the property/casualty segment reporting a year-over-year reduction of 22 per cent, the largest among the major industry segments, according to a new AM Best special report.

The Best’s Special Report, titled “Insurers Continue to Reduce Hedge Fund Exposures,” states that the continued pullback leaves the property/casualty segment with USD6.3 billion of hedge fund investments. The life/annuity segment (L/A) saw a fourth straight year of reductions of more than 10 per cent (11.9 per cent in 2019 to USD5.1 billion)...