Former Merrill Lynch Energy Trader Preps Hedge Fund

Apr 28 2008 | 1:01am ET

Newly-formed Veotoro Management is gearing up to launch a commodities hedge fund at the end of June. The Miami-based firm aims to raise $250 million for its initial offering, The Veotoro Commodities Hedge Fund, and will start trading the fund with some $25 million.

The new fund employs a relative value strategy in commodities and global energy sectors and aims to profit from mispricing between related financial and physical instruments while avoiding systemic risk.

“I think natural gas is currently underpriced and aluminum is overpriced,” said managing director Virgilio Guma, formerly a director of commodities trading for Merrill Lynch in London.

Guma believes that investors are not committing enough to the commodities sector and that the global oil supply is “severely” depleted.

“In terms of the oil market, I think supply won’t exceed 85 million barrels a day and there’s been some pretty high depletion rate with Russia being pretty much topped out. Mexico is short of exports and has become a net importer,” he said.

Guma started his career at Texaco in Houston trading crude oil and worked his way through the ranks into the derivatives market before founding the crude oil desk for Merrill Lynch.

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