Harbinger Losses Bleed Into January

Jan 21 2011 | 2:11pm ET

Few needed a fresh start to the new year as much as Harbinger Capital Partners' Philip Falcone. Unfortunately, the first few weeks of 2011 haven't proven any kinder to the hedge fund than did 2010.

Harbinger's flagship fund continued its losing ways in January. The fund lost about 12% last year; it has fallen a further 1.2% through the middle of this month, Reuters reports, citing Harbinger investors.

Falcone told Reuters, "the investors are wrong and so is your rationale."

Harbinger, which has seen its assets under management drop from $20 billion to $7 billion, late last year stopped reporting its numbers to HSBC.

Earlier this month, four U.S. Cabinet agencies demanded greater scrutiny of the nationwide wireless venture that Falcone has staked 40% of Harbinger's assets to. The departments of Commerce, Defense, Transportation and Homeland Security asked the Federal Communications Commission to investigate possible interference issues posed by LightSquared.

Last year, Falcone found himself and his firm from both investors and the Securities and Exchange Commission for a $113 million loan he took from Harbinger hedge funds to pay a tax bill. And Falcone's move to create a permanent capital vehicle produced a lawsuit seeking to overturn the deal.

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