Hedge Funds: Third Point Facing Rough Start to 2020

March 24, 2020 | Hedge Funds, News

Daniel Loeb’s hedge fund, Third Point, is off to one of its worst starts to the year ever.

The fund is currently reported to be down about 13% so far in 2020, and that’s after gaining 8% in the first half of March. That is the worst first-quarter performance for the fund c=since 2008 as the credit crisis was unfolding.

Third Point Slumps

While the main fund is down 13.5%, the listed shares that trade over the counter in the United States are currently down around 30% year to date as investors have adopted a risk-off position and sold shares aggressively. Since its inception in 1996, the fund has averaged 14.5%, making it one of the top-performing hedge funds over that period. Investors may be abandoning ship at the wrong time.

The stock is trading at 54% of book value right now. Given the collapse of global markets right now, the book value may be overstated a bit, but as of a week ago, the published Net Asset Value was $18.34 a share versus the current price of less than $12. Even if the fund has declined in line with the market return the shares are still trading at a substantial discount to the value of the stocks they own.

Third Point’s largest positions include Baxter healthcare (NYSE: BAX), United Technologies (NYSE: UTX), Allergan Plc (NYSE: AGN), Campbell Soup (NYSE: CPB), and Danaher (NYSE: DHR).

Third Pont has also recently revealed an activist stake in the British insurer Prudential Plc and suggested that the firm separate it’s Asian, and its US-based Jackson National Life form the rest of the company. In a letter to the management of Prudential Loeb said: “If PruAsia and Jackson were separated, resulting in a greater focus on reinvesting capital in each unit and streamlining central costs at the group level, our analysis indicates that the interests represented by Prudential plc shares can double within three years.”

Shares of Third Point trade in the OTC markets in the US with the ticker symbol (OTCMKTS: TPNTF).

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