Vinik Hit With $1.5 Billion In Redemptions

Apr 8 2013 | 11:29am ET

Last month, Jeffrey Vinik said he could see his firm managing as much as $10 billion. Instead, he finds his Vinik Asset Management running about $6.5 billion after a wave of redemptions.

Investors have asked to withdraw about $1.5 billion from the firm, about 18% of the $8 billion it currently manages. The redemptions come after a period of underperformance for Vinik, which returned just 0.3% between July and February, while the average long/short hedge fund rose more than 9%, The Wall Street Journal reports.

The withdrawals also coincide with investor fears that Vinik himself is stepping away from day-to-day management of the firm. Vinik recently moved from Boston to Tampa, Fla., to be closer to the hockey team, the Tampa Bay Lightning, he bought three years ago. He also last year took on the role of chief investment officer and hired a new investment team, and consolidated his firms' funds, each previously run by its own manager.

Some of Vinik's difficulties, however, are due to investment decisions he made, notably increasing exposure to equities at the end of last year. His new investment team also made a money-losing investment in gold.

At a JPMorgan Chase event last month, Vinik said he was responsible for the losses and that he would reduce the leverage the firm employed. He also said he plans to seek to raise money from new investors; according to the Journal, he has recently made himself more available to clients, to assure them that he remains focused on running the hedge fund.


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