Gross, who founded Pimco, brought up the divorce analogy in response to this question from The Times’ Andrew Ross Sorkin:
You had a tough 2014. In September, you left Pimco, the investment firm you founded in 1971, where you became known as “the bond king.” What was the hardest part about the past year for you?
Gross responded by saying the fact that he was “fired” was the roughest part of 2014. Then he asked Sorkin if he’d been “divorced yet.” Gross added:
Sorry, the “yet” was not appropriate. Just to explain, it’s sort of like divorce. You don’t want to get up and get out of bed. It is depressing, and it was a hard period of time and sort of still is. But it gets better every day. Like when you’re divorced, you have to meet new people, and life goes on.
At 71, Gross is working as portfolio manager at Janus Capital Management. Here was his answer to Sorkin’s question about what keeps him motivated:
I have an obsessive quality to me. When I left Pimco — or, put it this way, when Pimco left me — it was important to me to prove that they made a mistake.
Before his departure from Pimco, the Wall Street Journal reported in September, Gross’ behaviour grew increasingly erratic and he “yelled repeatedly” at members of Pimco’s executive committee. Several deputy chief investment officers reportedly threatened to leave if Gross didn’t go first.