Archive for February, 2011

Madoff Litigation Victims: The Citibank Case

February 25, 2011

Chidem Kurdas

There is one key interested party that is missing from the case filed against Citibank by Irving Picard, the government-appointed trustee of the Madoff estate. I went through the136-page complaint and nowhere did I see mentioned this group—hundreds of thousands of hidden and mostly nameless victims of the lawsuit. To declare a personal interest, I’m probably among them. (more…)


PIPE Deals Studied

February 24, 2011

Hedge funds used to be a large part of the market for private investments in public equity, but some are wary these days. While regulators look for evidence of inside trading, fund analysts have a different concern—-they scrutinize the valuation of the securities.  (more…)

Tiffany Glitter Continues for Peltz

February 22, 2011

Chidem Kurdas

Long-term activist investors take big risks but when they win, they win big.  The bet Nelson Peltz’s Trian made on Tiffany demonstrates this. (more…)

Madoff Agenda: What the Interview Means

February 17, 2011

Chidem Kurdas

Funny thing about the NYT interview with Bernard Madoff. He sounds as if he’s following a script meant to support the charges made by Irving Picard, the Madoff estate bankruptcy trustee, against JP Morgan Chase and other defendants. (more…)

Japan ETF Trades Rear Up

February 16, 2011

Japanese stocks were a money sink for so long that a lot of people gave up on them. However, what went down usually comes up again and brave souls are once again buying Japanese equities—or at least dipping in a toe by using exchange traded funds. (more…)

Mergers and acquisitions Spook Investors

February 15, 2011

Chidem Kurdas

Getting more capital together is often the main motive for a merger or acquisition. But the resulting business is often less than the sum of the parts. It ends up with less assets than the two combined managers had separately because some investors  redeem in response to the change.  (more…)

Blackstone Towers over Feeder Funds

February 9, 2011

Chidem Kurdas

Fund of hedge funds are still reeling from the Madoff fraud and huge redemptions. They had another net outflow of assets in 2010, despite investors moving back to hedge funds. But you would not know that this sector is in dire straits from Blackstone, which ended the year with a net inflow of $4.3 billion into its fund of funds and started a second manager seeding vehicle to feed the investment program.

Do other fund of funds have a chance? Certainly some are trying, even as the Blackstone behemoth attracts institutional investors.  (more…)

JPMorgan Highbridge Recovers, Investors Elusive

February 8, 2011

JP Morgan’s hedge fund business, hard hit  in the crisis, partially recovered in the past year but raising capital turned out to be tough. After some changes in staffing and structure, JP Morgan Highbridge is trying again. Will clients be willing to commit money?  (more…)

Energy Partnerships’ Record Capital Raising

February 7, 2011

Master limited partnerships raised $20 billion in debt and $12 billion in follow-on equity in 2010, in addition to initial public offerings—altogether more than in any previous year. Funds that invest in this natural resource niche did well. (more…)

Madoff Joke: Whistleblower Travails

February 2, 2011

Chidem Kurdas

Financial fraud typically comes to light because someone complains. But as Harry Markopolos found out when he went to the US Securities and Exchange Commission with evidence against Bernard Madoff, complaining may not put an end to a scheme.  And then people say you’re a joke! (See below.)

Indeed, the whistleblower’s lot is typically not a happy one, in the experience of Sherron Watkins, the accountant who detected that little accounting issue at Enron.  (more…)