When we wrote about Dan Loeb’s displeasure with the American Federation of Teachers, after his name was put on a hedge fund blacklist, we were secretly hoping that one of the other hedgies would also take offence and yell at the the teachers’ union, and then they will holler back, you know the works, but
that did not happen. Thanks to Julia La Roche from Business Insider, we have some new name-calling to add to the exchange.
Apparently the enemy hedge funds of AFT are taking their blacklist status as an honor, and they are proud of what they are doing. Sources who wished to stay anonymous told Business Insider that they find the actions of AFT thuggish. Hedge funds and asset managers have a lot of dependence on pension funds for building assets, and clearly the intent behind publishing the list was to drive away crucial investments into the said funds based on their agendas against defined benefit pension plans.
Other hedgies said they see their inclusion in the list as a badge of honor, however they still chose to say anonymous. It would have been more honorable of them, not to mention courageous, if they said these things on the record.
One source branded AFT’s actions as “McCarthyist at heart”, with the intent to influence new and existing investors based on the political views of the money managers. The list published by the union included famous names like Paul Singer, Paul Tudor, Alan Fournier, David Tepper, Steve Cohen, Carl Icahn, Julian Robertson, Henry Kravis and several others.
Interestingly, not one among the hedge funds commented on AFT’s publication on the record. Seems they are very much scared of the AFT after all, and understandably so. Dan Loeb’s letter to Conference of Institutional Investors is so far the only comment from a hedge funder in response to the AFT’s list.
However, here he stresses that, “I have never taken a position against DB Plans nor has any philanthropic organization I lead. In fact, my support for, and contribution to DB Plans is demonstrated by maximizing returns for union members who rely on us to deliver their pension goals.”
The statement was confusing in the regard that StudentsFirst New York, which was co-founded by Loeb, has a clear stand against DB plans. Either Loeb was not familiar with his organization’s agenda on education reforms or he simply chose to ignore that part while he scoffed at the CII. From his missive, we also know that Loeb is a true philanthropist at heart as he only produces stellar returns and big profits for the benefit of the pensioners and has no vested interest of his own like, earning money, getting rich and popular and running his hedge fund successfully.
The AFT watchlist or blacklist names 34 asset managers and threatens to add more in upcoming reports.