Dan Loeb looks to the east
By Matthew Goldstein
Is hedge fund manager Dan Loeb considering planting his Third Point flag somewhere in Asia?
A person close to the New York-based fund says Loeb has no plans to open an outpost in Asia. But investors familiar with Third Point are fueling speculation that Loeb may be considering doing that at some future time.
The speculation about Loeb’s interest in Asia may be the result of a two-week tour Loeb took of China and Hong Kong earlier this spring. The visit was part vacation/part educational for Loeb.
Overall, Loeb is said to be bullish on China. The Third Point manager doesn’t share the view of noted short-seller Jim Chanos, who is openly calling the Chinese growth story a bubble that’s waiting to pop.
Right now, China remains more of a fascination than a reality for U.S. hedge fund managers. Chinese investors are generally prohibited from investing in hedge funds–especially ones in the U.S. and Europe.
It’s more likely that Loeb’s trip was simply setting the stage for the day when Chinese officials ease restrictions on their citizens investing money abroad. Of course, no one knows just when that day will arrive.