JPMorgan Keeps Top Spot Among Biggest Hedge Fund Managers

Mar 8 2010 | 4:18am ET

JPMorgan Chase remains the largest hedge fund manager in the world, according to Pensions & Investments.

JPMorgan Asset Management manages $32.5 billion in hedge fund assets and Highbridge Capital Management another $21 billion for a total of $53.5 billion. That’s 18.9% more than it managed at the end of 2007, the last time the P&I rankings of hedge funds with at least $20 billion in assets came out.

Bridgewater Associates also held its own, retaining second place with $43.6 billion, 21% more than two years ago. Paulson & Co. leapt from eighth to third, as its assets rose 10%.

There’s one more hedge fund manager today with at least $20 billion than there was two years. But the lot of them doesn’t manage much more now than they did then. The ten biggest hedge fund managers at the end of 2007 boasted $316 billion in assets. The 11 that make the list this year manage just $200 million more.

Making that list this time around are Brevan Howard Asset Management—the largest hedge fund manager in Europe—Baupost Group, Soros Fund Management, Man Group and BlackRock. Dropping off the list last year were Goldman Sachs Asset Management, Renaissance Technologies, Citadel Investment Group and Barclays Global Investors, which was bought last year by BlackRock.

Brevan Howard and Soros tied for fourth on the list with $27 billion. The Man Group followed at $25.3 billion.

Och-Ziff Capital Management, which saw its assets under management fall more than 30% to $23.1 billion, took seventh place, followed by D.E. Shaw Group with $23 billion, as down more than 30%. BlackRock stood in ninth with $21 billion, $1 billion more than BGI managed two years ago.

Farallon Capital Management stays on the list despite losing 42.5% of its assets since 2007; the San Francisco-based firm currently manages $20.7 billion. Baupost rounded out the 11-member list with $20 billion on the nose.

Institutional investors appear to be souring slightly on the biggest names in the business: They account for less than half of the top 11’s total assets with $151 billion. Two years ago, the equivalent figures were 62% and $194.9 billion.

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