Sunday, 7 February 2016
Last updated 1 day ago
Feb 13 2009 | 3:57am ET
In the wake of accusations of fraud, Finvest Asset Management is responding with a barrage of press releases.
With the Securities and Exchange Commission, which on Tuesday sued the hedge fund shop and founder Grant Grieve for allegedly lying to investors, casting doubt on Finvest’s money-management business, the firm claims it is going into the job-creation business. The firm issued a press release on Wednesday declaring that it “will create 50,000 new jobs in 2009.” Writing that “empirical evidence” shows that every $1 billion spent creates 18,000, Finvest uses its allegedly questionable arithmetic skills to show the economic impact of the $2.5 billion equity mandate it recently won.
In this case, of course, if you accept the “empirical evidence,” the math is spot on. Not so, says the SEC, of its claims about its funds’ returns. The regulator says he showed an investor a brokerage statement showing that one of its hedge funds, the Primer Fund, had $118 million in a trading account. In fact, that account had a negative balance of $65, according to the SEC.
Of course, the Primer Fund is not long for this world. Finvest put out another release yesterday, announcing its plan to wind down the fund without mentioning the SEC complaint. According to Finvest, it will liquidate the fund and return all allocations to investors over the next six months, whereafter it will focus more attention on its new job-creation initiative.
“The economy needs job creation, companies need capital, and we will be aiming to work with other strategic partners, who are like-minded in identifying solutions and goals, to resolve or break the current credit and capital hiatus,” Neil Saunders, a Finvest analyst, said of its plans to expand its “pure equity” and fund of funds activities.
According to the release, Primer “experienced modest growth” during its eight-year run, with a “minimally positive return” last year.