Ackman's Pershing Square hedge fund drops 9.2 percent in August

Wed Sep 2, 2015 10:05pm EDT
 
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By Svea Herbst-Bayliss and Richard Valdmanis

BOSTON (Reuters) - Hedge fund mogul William Ackman, one of last year's best performers, joined a string of high profile managers in reporting deep losses for August as global markets tumbled amid fears over slower growth in China.

Ackman's Pershing Square Capital Management, which makes concentrated bets on a small number of stocks, told clients on Wednesday that its Pershing Square LP fund fell 7.7 percent last month, leaving it flat on the year with a 0.06 percent gain.

The firm's Pershing Square Holdings portfolio dropped 9.2 percent, and is now down 0.1 percent for the year, erasing a 10 percent gain it had at the end of July, two sources familiar with the numbers said. Last year the fund gained 40 percent, beating the Standard & Poor's 13.7 percent gain.

Ackman warned investors in a letter last week that tumbling markets had wiped out gains. The decline moderated slightly when the market rebounded some late last week.

The shift of fortunes shows how much market volatility, sparked by sharp declines in Chinese stock prices, has

hurt the world's most prominent investors.

Although some investors, like managers, grumbled about August's rout, several said hedge funds were largely still beating the broader market. The Standard & Poor's 500 fell 6 percent in August while the average hedge fund lost 2.2 percent, data from Hedge Fund Research show.

Leon Cooperman's Omega Advisors closed the month with a 6 percent loss, while Dan Benton's Andor Capital, which invests heavily in technology stocks, fell 4.5 percent, investors said.   Continued...

 
William Ackman, founder and CEO of hedge fund Pershing Square Capital Management, speaks during the Sohn Investment Conference in New York May 4, 2015. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid