In less than seven days, hedge funds have been subject to a three-pronged attack by some of the biggest names in finance.
Bloomberg News reports that Steven Cohen, the billionaire trader whose former hedge fund had racked up average annual returns of 30% before it pleaded guilty to securities fraud in 2013, said he’s astounded by the limited number of skilled people in the industry.
“Frankly, I’m blown away by the lack of talent,” Cohen said at the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California, on Monday. “It’s not easy to find great people. We whittle down the funnel to maybe 2 to 4% of the candidates we’re interested in. Talent is really thin.”
Cohen’s comments come after billionaire Warren Buffett said over the weekend that large investors should be frustrated with the fees they pay hedge funds who fail to match the returns of index funds. Daniel Loeb, founder of hedge fund firm Third Point, said last week that industry performance this year was “catastrophic” and that funds were in the early stages of a “washout.”
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