Here's Why Hedge Fund Managers Hate It When Their Investor Letters Get Online

Every once in a while, Dealbreaker, Zerohedge, we, or someone in the mainstream media, come across a hedge fund manager’s investor letter and post it online

By the way some have reacted to their letters being posted online, it’s obvious they hate it.

(Zerohedge had to pull their Paulson down letter minutes after posting it online. In our case, Paulson has asked firmly us to take it down. In another, Paul Singer went all out with lawyers to prevent AR Alpha from posting Elliot Management’s.)

But why?

Originally, we thought that investors, at least sometimes*, would want to share the ideas in their letters with the public, if for no other reason than to hear some feedback from people who disagree with them — until we said that to a guy in the industry.

He told us that hedge fund managers go to extreme lengths to prevent their letters from getting published online because when they do, it cheapens your brand. It also makes them look dumb for trying so hard.

Of course, there are reasons why most times they wouldn’t want their letters and ideas public, like maybe:

  • It can be considered marketing, which is a legal no-no for hedge funds
  • Crowding
  • They pay their research analysts good money 
  • There might be other details in there that they don’t want to be made public knowledge.

So Paulson, for example, only allows his letters to be printed out *once.* And they’re not available in PDF form. Others copyright their letters.

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