Paulson Advantage funds hold $4.2 billion of more than $20 billion that Paulson & Co. manages, according to a presentation seen by ValueWalk. These event-driven hedge funds, Advantage and Advantage Plus, have the highest exposure in post-reorganized equities followed by almost equal asset allocation in Energy, Financials and Healthcare sector.
Take a look at how John Paulson has done in his credit holdings this year.
Paulson is gaining in gold this time
One of Paulson’s most publicized holdings, gold, takes up only 11.5% of the Advantage funds which amounts to a position of $480 million. It seems the hedge fund is having better luck in the precious metal this year. Holdings in gold have the highest attribution to Advantage funds’ performance this year, however due to losses in other assets the Advantage Fund is down 2.5% through May whereas Advantage Plus has lost 1.9%
In precious metals, Paulson’s holding in AngloGold Ashanti Limited (ADR) (NYSE:AU) has risen over 30% since last year.The fund believes that there is further upside in gold as the commodity revalues over time.
Post-reorganized equities collect gains for Advantage funds
Paulson & Co.’s mid-year report highlights some of the equity holdings in which the Advantage Funds have underperformed. Stocks of Extended Stay America Inc (NYSE:STAY), Caesars Entertainment Corp (NASDAQ:CZR),Vodafone Group Plc (ADR) (NASDAQ:VOD), where Paulson has major stakes, have underperformed through the first half of 2014. Paulson’s positions in Houghton Mifflin Harcour Co. (NASDAQ:HMHC) and MGM Resorts International (NYSE:MGM) have done well this year after the companies went through restructuring in 2013.
Another example of Paulson’s holdings that have benefited from restructuring efforts is Hartford Financial services Group Inc (NYSE:HIG). The stock has gained nearly 60% over a span of 18 months. HIG has spun off a large part of its life insurance and annuity business in response to agitation from the hedge fund. Paulson believes that the stock will re-rate favorably as the company becomes a pure play P&C insurer.
Bets in oil & gas to benefit from shale boom
Paulson’s bets in the energy sector have potential to benefit from exploration in Bakken shale formation. The hedge fund has positions in
Recovery funds gain from Greek banks
As opposed to Advantage funds, Paulson Recovery Fund seeks to maintain a high net long exposure of 90-110%.The Recovery fund has the highest exposure in banks, in this regard holdings in Greek banks have done particularly well. Paulson is among the largest holders of Alpha Bank (OTCMKTS:ALBKY), one of the large banks of Greece by assets. The fund holds both stock and warrants of Alpha Bank, and each has returned 9% and 57% through May of this year. Paulson joins some other famous investors, including David Einhorn, Seth Klarman, Prem Watsa among those betting on Greek banks, his fund holds warrants of Alpha Bank that makes him eligible to buy more stock after a specified period.
Another long that has contributed to the fund’s profits is Genworth Financial Inc (NYSE:GNW). The stock is up 10% YTD through May, after rising spectacularly through last year with the sale of its wealth management business. Paulson Recovery funds are profiting from the recovery in the housing sector through positions in mortgage insurers like Radian Group Inc (NYSE:RDN) and MGIC Investment Corp. (NYSE:MTG).
Other large holdings of the Recovery fund include, Delphi Automotive PLC (NYSE:DLPH), The Blackstone Group L.P.(NYSE:BX), Apollo Global Management LLC (NYSE:APO) and CNO Financial Group Inc (NYSE:CNO).
Paulson Recovery Fund is up 1.5% through May 2014; the strategy manages $3 billion.