While the majority of hedge fund managers prefer to keep a low profile, owing to the nature of their work and the pressures that come with it, some have achieved such unparalleled levels of success that attention is thrust upon them.
Forbes recently compiled their list top hedge fund managers as part of their top 400 series, their logic being that the top managers are the ones with the most financial success.
Here’s a run-down of the Forbes list.
Probably the most well-known hedge fund manager in history, George Soros also happens to be the most successful with a $22 billion fortune.
Once known as “the man who broke the Bank of England” Soros came to the public’s attention after reportedly making $1.1billion after the UK government withdrew from the European Exchange Rate Mechanism.
Recently, Soros announced that he was returning money to outside investors and investing his own family’s money in order to manage his own cash.
Second on the list is John Paulson with an estimated $15.5 billion fortune. Paulson reportedly earned $4.9 billion in 2010 and while the fund understandably struggled to reach the same heights in 2011, gold-denominated funds, which form the majority of his investments, are up.
Paulson is notoriously media shy and has never given a television interview. He told one interviewer “I avoid the media.”
Another hedge fund manager notoriously shy of media attention is James Simons.
The $10.6 billion worth manager has quoted the character of Benjamin the donkey from Animal Farm as his attitude to press coverage – “God gave me a tail to keep off the flies. But I’d rather have had no tail and no flies.”
Simons retired from his hedge fund in 2010 but still has interests in Renaissance Technologies, which posted a significant 30% gain in the same year.
Forbes Magazine estimates Cohen’s fortune at $8.3 billion in September 2011, ranking him the 35th richest man in the United States. Cohen’s $1 billion increase in wealth comes from positive returns for investors, but also by charging steep fees for SAC Capital’s services – 3% of assets and an incredible 35% of profits.
Running the world’s biggest hedge fund ($110 billion AUM) and with a personal worth of $6.5 billion, Ray Dalio could be forgiven for being just as media shy as his compatriots. But, in order to better explain his own perception of economic theory, which has served him well so far, Dalio released a 30 minute YouTube video last year to great media acclaim.
His flagship Bridgewater fund has been up 4 years in a row and shows why his approach has been so successful for so long.
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