All Quiet on the Hiring Front: Top Five Quietest Hirers Among Big Firms in 2016

A few big firms — AQR Capital Management, Citadel, Millennium Management, Two Sigma Investments, Bridgewater Associates and Point72 Asset Management in particular — have been actively hiring in 2016, alongside midsize firms trying to reach the major leagues and several high-profile start-ups.

And as the calendar year draws to a close and bonuses large and small are direct-deposited to staff accounts and Christmas carols are heard on streets throughout much of the world, overall recruiting is tapering off as well.

Yet for several big hedge funds — by “big,” we mean at least $10 billion in assets under management and staff sizes measured in the hundreds — full-time hiring has been muted all year.

Among the quietest big-league hirers — most of whom performed poorly, while a few performed well — are New York–headquartered Paulson & Co., Eton Park Capital Management and York Capital Management; San Francisco–headquartered Farallon Capital Management; and East Setauket, NY–based Renaissance Technologies, recently featured in a November 21 Bloomberg article titled “Inside a Moneymaking Machine Like No Other,” with a reported greater than 20 percent Medallion Fund return as of June 2016.

London-headquartered Brevan Howard was a close runner-up.

For perspective, Citadel averaged more hires — or departures — in six active weeks than all five averaged all year.

This is against a 2016 backdrop where several poorly performing big funds with shrinking assets, including Tudor Investment Corp., and even some under federal investigation have been handing out more new-hire IDs in 2016 than these top five quiet hirers.

Brevan Howard hired a handful of investment professionals and a few client service, marketing and risk/operations personnel. Meanwhile, Paulson, Eton Park, Farallon, York Capital and Renaissance hired a few mostly junior and midlevel staff in investment, marketing, investor relations, legal/compliance and software developer roles. Among them, only Brevan and Eton Park made a few senior hires. York Capital’s hires skewed more front office than its top five peers.

For the purpose of this analysis, we excluded non-hedge fund roles, internally promoted staff members (not new hires) and administrative hires.

The HFObserver Industry Moves Database is compiled daily from publicly available sources and information sent to HFObserver (click here to access full listing of monthly job moves — subscription required).

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