market folly
Updates on what top hedge funds are investing in

  • What We're Reading ~ Analytical Links 4/16/14
    Notes from the DoubleLine lunch with Jeff Gundlach [Reformed Broker]

    The illusion of conscious investing decisions [All About Alpha]

    Prem Watsa says dot-com rally to 'end in tears' [Bloomberg]

    Interview with Larry Pitkowsky and Keith Trauner of GoodHaven Fund [Forbes]

    Charting a tasty future for Post Holdings [Barrons]

    Google moving to play a larger role in booking hotel rooms [WSJ]

    US companies adding significantly to their debt [FT]

    Amazon's new smartphone? [BGR]

    Jeff Bezos' annual letter [SEC]

    The problem with profitless start-ups [NYMag]

    Can do vs can't do cultures [BHorowitz]

    Michael Lewis' "The Big Short" to hit the big screen [CNN Money]

  • Bill Ackman's Pershing Square Trims Beam Stake Again
    Bill Ackman's hedge fund firm Pershing Square Capital Management has filed an amended 13D with the SEC regarding their position in Beam Inc (BEAM).  Per the filing, Pershing now owns 5.5% of the company with 9.1 million shares.

    Pershing previously trimmed its BEAM stake just a few months ago and since then, they've reduced their position size even further, down 2.55 million more shares. 

    The filing notes that they sold the bulk of their shares on April 11th, 14th, and 15th at prices of $83.26.  This marks a total decrease in their position size of 11.7 million shares since the end of 2013.

    BEAM has received a $16 billion takeover offer from Suntory via $83.50 per share in cash.  Since the spread has narrowed, it looks like Ackman is raising capital to potentially deploy into ideas with higher potential returns.

    You can view other recent portfolio activity from Ackman here.

  • JANA Partners Reduces Outerwall Position
    Per an amended 13D filed with the SEC, Barry Rosenstein's hedge fund firm JANA Partners has reduced its ownership stake in Outerwall (OUTR) down to 4.9% of the company.  Due to portfolio activity on April 8th, they now own 997,041 shares.

    This marks a sizable decrease as they've sold over 2.7 million shares since the end of 2013, with 725,000 of those sales coming since the middle of March.

    JANA's filing indicates that they reduced the size of the investment "through regular portfolio management activities.  (JANA) is highly supportive of the recent steps taken by the Issuer's board and management, in particular the Issuer's commitment to improving capital allocation discipline, increasing its return of capital to shareholders, and driving cost efficiencies."

    You can view additional recent portfolio activity from JANA here.

    Per Google Finance, Outerwall is "formerly Coinstar, Inc., is a provider of automated retail solutions, which offers convenient products and services. the Company's offerings in automated retail include its Redbox business, where consumers can rent or purchase movies and video games from self-service kiosks (Redbox segment), and its Coin business, where consumers can convert their coin to cash or stored value products at self-service coin counting kiosks (Coin segment). Its New Ventures business (New Ventures segment) is focused on identifying, evaluating, building, and developing self-service concepts in the marketplace."

  • What We're Reading ~ Hedge Fund Links 4/11/14
    Age bigger factor than size in hedge fund performance [FINalternatives]

    Coatue to return $2 billion to investors [CNBC]

    On lunch with T. Boone Pickens [Morgan Housel]

    Looking at some hedge fund pay [Business Insider]

    Hedge fund research: transparently short [Barrons]

    Tiger Global invests in Quora [ValueWalk]

    Inside Kyle Bass' favorite mortgage servicing play [II Alpha]

    Hedge funds' leveraged bets on market rally to magnify selloffs [Reuters]

    SAC portfolio manager Plotkin to start his own fund [WSJ]

  • Sohn Investment Conference Speakers Announced: Less Than a Month Away
    The 19th Annual Sohn Investment Conference is right around the corner on May 5th, 2014 in New York.  This is one of the premier investment conferences each year and it features an insanely good speakers list.  Produced by Bloomberg LINK, the event is a fundraiser to support pediatric cancer research.  You can register for the Sohn Conference here.

    Sohn Speakers List

    - Paul Tudor Jones (Tudor Investment Corp)
    - Bill Ackman (Pershing Square Capital)
    - David Einhorn (Greenlight Capital)
    - Philippe Laffont (Coatue Management)
    - Michael Novogratz (Fortress Investment Group)
    - Larry Robbins (Glenview Capital)
    - Jeff Gundlach (DoubleLine)
    - Chris Shumway (Shumway Capital)
    - Zach Schreiber (PointState Capital)
    - Mariko Gordon (Daruma Capital)
    - James Grant (Grant's Interest Rate Observer)
    - Dan Ariely (Professor of Psychology & Behavior Economics at Duke University)

    Event Details

    Date: May 5th, 2014

    Location: Avery Fisher Hall, Lincoln Center.  New York, NY

    Time: 12:00 PM - 5:30 PM

    Reception to follow afterwards

    New "Next Wave Sohn" Event Added This Year

    For the first time, a "Next Wave Sohn" mini-conference will take place at the same location just before the main event.  Starting at 9:30 AM, Next Wave Sohn features up and coming managers presenting their latest investment ideas.  If you register for the main Sohn Conference, you can RSVP to Next Wave Sohn for no additional cost.

    Here's the speakers list for Next Wave Sohn:

    - Ethan Devine (Indus Capital)
    - Jason Karp (Tourbillon Capital)
    - John Khoury (Long Pond Capital)
    - Nitin Saigal (Kora)
    - Will Snellings (Marianas Fund)

    Sohn Conference Less Than A Month Away

    The Sohn Conference is less than a month away, so be sure to register before it's too late.  This year you're essentially getting to attend two conferences for the price of one, with proceeds benefiting pediatric cancer research.

    This truly is a fantastic speakers list, so hear the latest investment ideas from top hedge fund managers by registering for the Sohn Conference here.

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