Daniel Loeb surfing to the top of the hedge fund charts again
Something must be in the water over at 399 Park Avenue, where Daniel Loebâ€™s hedge fund Third Point is headquartered. His Third Point Ultra fund has already gained 12.42 percent this year through the 13th of March, according to data from HSBCâ€™s Private Bank.
The portfolio added 3.3 percent alone between March 1 and March 13. By comparison, hedge funds have returned about 4 percent year-to-date, according to HSBC.
The roughly $1.7 billion Ultra portfolio is a levered version of the firmâ€™s flagship Offshore fund, which manages about $5.7 billion and has gained 8.5 percent over the same period.
It will be more useful to check in again at the end of the month to see where Ultraâ€™s returns are but we thought the gains were worth pointing out because the fund is among the Top 10 performers in HSBCâ€™s HedgeWeekly report again after finishing in the Top 10 last year.
Ultra rose 34.5 percent in 2012, far outpacing most hedge funds, which on average gained about 6 percent. Loebâ€™s success in 2012 was perhaps more impressive given the fact most of the funds that really stormed home last year were credit-focused funds, which made a ton of money as bonds of every kind rose in value through the year.
Third Point got off to a strong start this year after riding theÂ Japan macro Abe-trade, whichÂ paid off for a number of hedge funds,Â notably George Soros. Returns were also amped by winning bets on currentÂ hedge-fund-saga-du-jour Herbalife, and investments in Morgan Stanley, AIG and Greek government bonds.
Loeb stripped out the â€śTop Winnersâ€ť listing from Third Pointâ€™s February tear-sheet but we know the top positions at the end of February were Yahoo, Virgin Media, Gold, AIG, and Ally Financial. All rose in value, however slightly, between March 1 and March 13, when the fund added 3.3 percent.
Fun fact about the Ultra fund: in its inaugural year, Â it returned 98.3 percent. That was back in the heady Wall Street days of 1997, when the S&P 500 rose 33.4 percent. In its worst year â€“ 2008 â€“ the levered Ultra tumbled 38.6 percent, when hedge funds on average lostÂ 19.2 percent.