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Can a hedge fund/partnership legally reimburse for losses?


stahleyp
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Hey all,

 

I tried searching for this but no luck.

 

Buffett agreed to reimburse his original partners for losses. I think Pabrai did this too. I want to say that I read somewhere that it was not legal to do "make a client whole" today but is that right? Can an investment manager make a client whole?

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Hey all,

 

I tried searching for this but no luck.

 

Buffett agreed to reimburse his original partners for losses. I think Pabrai did this too. I want to say that I read somewhere that it was not legal to do "make a client whole" today but is that right? Can an investment manager make a client whole?

 

I don't know if it's "illegal" to do so - but it was my understanding that it's against the current regulations to suggest that you would. The problem is in the suggesting/promising you will - not necessarily in the doing.

 

Scenario A: You lose money and surprise clients by making them whole. (This is probably ok).

Scenario B: You tell clients you will make them whole if you lose money (This is not ok).

 

Also, it may change if clients are sophisticated, accredited investors. I know that you are unable to have an incetive fee type structure (i.e. a hurdle rate) with normal retail investors...even if it's in their favor.

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I know that you are unable to have an incetive fee type structure (i.e. a hurdle rate) with normal retail investors...even if it's in their favor.

 

Mutual funds can have incentive fee structure. And there are (mutual fund?) managers who reimburse fees like Chou.

 

(The whole "incentive fees not allowed for hedge funds for retail investors" is weird although I kinda know where it came from.)

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I know that you are unable to have an incetive fee type structure (i.e. a hurdle rate) with normal retail investors...even if it's in their favor.

 

Mutual funds can have incentive fee structure. And there are (mutual fund?) managers who reimburse fees like Chou.

 

(The whole "incentive fees not allowed for hedge funds for retail investors" is weird although I kinda know where it came from.)

 

I hadn't thought of mutual funds - was thinking of hedge funds and RIAs. Thanks for pointing that out!

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Hey all,

 

I tried searching for this but no luck.

 

Buffett agreed to reimburse his original partners for losses. I think Pabrai did this too. I want to say that I read somewhere that it was not legal to do "make a client whole" today but is that right? Can an investment manager make a client whole?

 

What you cannot do is guarantee that partners will not lose money, and you also cannot guarantee to make some partners whole from the capital of other limited partners.  You can certainly redistribute your own GP stake to limited partners, but this may create some tax issues as the partnership is a flow-through vehicle. 

 

We are doing this with one of our partners in the Canadian fund which we are closing, who put money in about a year before we decided to close.  While we have no obligation to make him/her whole, we felt that our decision to close was contrary to the expectations he/she had when he/she invested, and felt we would be around for a long time.

 

There are very few managers...you can probably count them on both hands...who have ever made partners whole, either through a partnership or mutual fund.  99% of managers would say that is the risk the investor takes.  That is correct to a certain degree, but I think common sense and discretion should also be part of any fiduciary's responsibilities.  Cheers!

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Thanks for the insight, Sanj.

 

I've thought about doing something like this but not sure it's legal. Basically if anyone invests for 5 years, they would at least get their original investment back (out of personal funds - not other LPs). It's looking like this isn't possible? How'd Pabrai do it?

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Not sure if this completely applies here, but I know I've read that you can't reimburse fees in a way that acts like a performance fee for non-qualified investors. So if you have three good years and charge a 2% management fee each year and then you have a down year and don't charge the 2% fee (or reimburse it), regulators may look at that as equivalent to charging a performance fee to non-qualified investors, which isn't allowed.

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Guest longinvestor

Hey all,

 

I tried searching for this but no luck.

 

Buffett agreed to reimburse his original partners for losses. I think Pabrai did this too. I want to say that I read somewhere that it was not legal to do "make a client whole" today but is that right? Can an investment manager make a client whole?

 

What you cannot do is guarantee that partners will not lose money, and you also cannot guarantee to make some partners whole from the capital of other limited partners.  You can certainly redistribute your own GP stake to limited partners, but this may create some tax issues as the partnership is a flow-through vehicle. 

 

We are doing this with one of our partners in the Canadian fund which we are closing, who put money in about a year before we decided to close.  While we have no obligation to make him/her whole, we felt that our decision to close was contrary to the expectations he/she had when he/she invested, and felt we would be around for a long time.

 

There are very few managers...you can probably count them on both hands...who have ever made partners whole, either through a partnership or mutual fund.  99% of managers would say that is the risk the investor takes.  That is correct to a certain degree, but I think common sense and discretion should also be part of any fiduciary's responsibilities.  Cheers!

 

Well said.

 

It's a shame that it is as high as that, 99% with a clear lack the fiduciary responsibility. For most ordinary investors, the dumbest money they spend is on investments (versus houses, cars etc. ). And likely their biggest one over their lifetimes. It is hard not to notice Buffett taking a louder and louder stance with this. Inviting Bogle to the meeting, giving that hf bet lots of publicity etc. Wish more well meaning celebrities would join Bogle/Buffett in educating the masses. 

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Hey all,

 

I tried searching for this but no luck.

 

Buffett agreed to reimburse his original partners for losses. I think Pabrai did this too. I want to say that I read somewhere that it was not legal to do "make a client whole" today but is that right? Can an investment manager make a client whole?

 

The 99% number was a bit of hyperbole on my part...it was simply meant to convey that most managers think very highly of themselves...that the investor takes the risk on because of the opportunity they are getting with that manager.  Very few managers think of it the other way...they are privileged to have investors trust them and invest with them.  Cheers!

 

What you cannot do is guarantee that partners will not lose money, and you also cannot guarantee to make some partners whole from the capital of other limited partners.  You can certainly redistribute your own GP stake to limited partners, but this may create some tax issues as the partnership is a flow-through vehicle. 

 

We are doing this with one of our partners in the Canadian fund which we are closing, who put money in about a year before we decided to close.  While we have no obligation to make him/her whole, we felt that our decision to close was contrary to the expectations he/she had when he/she invested, and felt we would be around for a long time.

 

There are very few managers...you can probably count them on both hands...who have ever made partners whole, either through a partnership or mutual fund.  99% of managers would say that is the risk the investor takes.  That is correct to a certain degree, but I think common sense and discretion should also be part of any fiduciary's responsibilities.  Cheers!

 

Well said.

 

It's a shame that it is as high as that, 99% with a clear lack the fiduciary responsibility. For most ordinary investors, the dumbest money they spend is on investments (versus houses, cars etc. ). And likely their biggest one over their lifetimes. It is hard not to notice Buffett taking a louder and louder stance with this. Inviting Bogle to the meeting, giving that hf bet lots of publicity etc. Wish more well meaning celebrities would join Bogle/Buffett in educating the masses.

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