Wealth Manager Prepares To Quit Common Sense

Sep 18 2013 | 10:36am ET

A longtime investor in Common Sense Investment Management—run by a longtime friend of Common Sense CEO James Bisenius—may pull its clients' money from the firm following Bisenius' arrest on prostitution charges last month.

Wealth manager Arnerich Massena told clients that it would consider redeeming from Common Sense, following the Cincinnati Retirement System and Fresno County Employees' Retirement System's exits from the fund of hedge funds. As with the pensions, Bisenius' arrest isn't the only issue, but exacerbates concerns about recent poor performance.

"While our continuous due diligence of [Common Sense] has never given us reason to question the firm's integrity or their safekeeping of our clients' assets, Mr. Bisenius' arrest raises serious concerns in spite of the fact that everyone is innocent until proven guilty under the American legal system," the Portland, Ore.-based firm wrote.

Arnerich Massena added that Coomon Sense has been on watch "for almost a year due to poor performance and employee turnover," and said it would "continue to monitor the situation closely." In the meantime, the firm said it would send a "potential full redemption" notice to Common Sense.

It is unclear how much of Arnerich Massena's more than $20 billion in assets under management is entrusted to Common Sense. The firm has invested with the fund for more than 20 years, and Arnerich Massena co-founder Tony Arnerich is a former colleague and long-time friend of Bisenius.

Bisenius was arrested on Aug. 1 outside Portland, as part of a sting operation that netted nine alleged johns. Bisenius' wife is the majority owner of Common Sense, which called the arrest a "personal matter" and said that Bisenius would remain its CEO and chief investment officer.


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