Hedge Funds: AQR Capital is Cutting Staff… “It’s Carnage”


The New York Post reports that up to 20% of its staff. Bloomberg says up to 10%.

AQR Capital has $186 billion under management. Its $2.1 billion Style Premia Alternative Fund lost 8.2% in 2019.

And now, the company is cutting its staff for the second straight year. Bloomberg reports that the firm will cut between 5% to 10% of its staff after outflows hit the company again this year. However, the New York Post cites an unnamed source who compared the cuts to “carnage.”

“It’s bad here,” the source told The Post. “We’re hearing 15-20 percent of headcount getting chopped.”

AQR Capital Staff Cuts

The Post contacted AQR on Wednesday for a quote on the matter. The firm’s spokeswoman said that cuts were more in line with what Bloomberg reported.

“This continues to be a challenging time for the asset management industry,” Suzanne Escousse, AQR’s chief marketing officer, said in a statement. “After conducting our annual review, we made the difficult decision to reduce headcount to balance the size of our workforce with the current needs of our clients.”

Following a difficult 2018, the firm had cut its staff by 10%. However, 2019 appears to have rivaled the fund’s weakness. Back in April, the firm reported a 34% decline in profits. In addition, the firm has seen its assets under management declined by 20% over the last few years, Yahoo! reports.

Its U.S. mutual funds have seen large outflows in the last two years. These funds saw $8.1 billion in outflows in 2018 and another $5.3 billion last year, according to Morningstar.

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