Thursday, October 22, 2009
John Meriwether is back. Remember him? The founder of Long Term Capital Management, the hedge fund that blew itself up in 1998 and almost took down Wall Street with it? Then there was JWM Partners, a vehicle he set up right after Long Term's collapse, a much more conservative fund that only lost 44% in last year's crisis. Mr. Meriwether wound that one down, presumably not thrilled about the prospect of having to work for free to get back to that high water mark again. Not one to rest on his laurels, Mr. Meriwether is launching yet another fund, this one to be called JM Advisors. Has he discovered some new money making scheme? Nah, he's planning to stick to his tried and true strategy of relative value arbitrage, aka "making a little money for a few years before you give it all back in one fell swoop." Anyone willing to invest in this new vehicle deserves exactly what they get. But pensions and endowments should not be allowed in.