Cooperman: KKR, Sallie Mae, Gold

Omega Advisors chief Leon Cooperman must be very confident about the private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. He’s bought it in two different ways.

Before the NYSE initial public offering by Kohlberg Kravis Roberts in July, Cooperman had a large and growing position in a separate publicly-traded credit investment vehicle managed by the firm.

It turns out, he held on to that and added company stock as well, now that the company is public. The stock went down after the IPO but recovered and did well in recent months. Mr. Cooperman still has a substantial position, worth  around $126 million, in the KKR credit fund and a smaller holding of KKR company stock.

He’s gone for other financial businesses as well, notably Sallie Mae, the maker and servicer of student loans. Sallie Mae was created by the government to provide federally guaranteed student loans. While currently a private company, it resembles mortgage buyers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in having federal guarantees.

Mr. Cooperman is among the hedge fund managers that purchased gold—in the form of the SPDR Gold Trust.

So, private equity, government-guaranteed loans, gold and also energy. That’s a mostly bullish portfolio, except for Sallie Mae.

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