Skybridge Capital’s Anthony “Mooch” Scaramucci went on an epic rant this afternoon on CNBC’s “Fast Money” after the news broke that SAC Capital and U.S. prosecutors
could reach a settlement dealin the coming days.
Scaramucci has been a vocal supporter of embattled billionaire hedge fund manager Steve Cohen.
Cohen’s Stamford, Connecticut-based SAC Capital has been criminally charged for insider trading. SAC was charged with four counts of securities fraud and one count of wire fraud.
SAC could face a possible fine north of $US1 billion and have to admit guilt.
Anchor Scott Wapner asked Scaramucci, who runs a fund of funds, about the possibility of Cohen not being able to manage money and the impact on his business.
He didn’t really answer the question, though.
“I think it’s sad for the people who have their money managed by Steve. He’s had a great performance this year. You guys know how I feel about him personally. I hope that this is the cycle of the witch hunting ending for the Department of Justice and the SEC.”
Wapner replied, “I understand…Guilty plea changes things a little bit doesn’t it?
“Scott, when they paint you into the corner and they have unlimited resources OK. And you’re trying to get on with your life. It’s sort of one of the only things you can do on the Venn Diagram. The Department of Justice and the SEC are gone crazy in these matters. OK look at JPMorgan. Not just SAC/Cohen. They’re after everybody. I think it’s unfair. I’m one of the few people who’s bold enough to speak out about it.”
It didn’t end there, though. A few minutes later Scaramucci took over the conversation again.
“They’ve got to scapegoat a few people, OK. And what they hope ot do is they hold those people up as an example to scare the rest of the people. And Marc Cuban, in Marc Cuban’s case, they had to drop the case.”
Then, as the music was coming on for the commercial break, Wapner stopped it so Scaramucci could make his point.
Scaramucci kept on comparing the SAC Capital case to Salem witch hunts. He believes the SEC is just upset because they messed up the Bernie Madoff ponzi scheme case.
“OK. Look, they’re upset. I know you guys didn’t get the Madoff thing right. You went in there and investigated him several times and blew it. So now you’re on a witch hunt for everybody. Why don’t we just stop it at this point.”
Kate Kelly jumped in and pointed out that a recent survey of hedge fund professionals showed that people had witnessed bad or illegal behaviour in their workplace.
Scaramucci dismissed that.
“Like any profession, doctors, etc., there are bad actors everywhere but what we do in the media is we focus on two or three things and make it look like the whole industry is tainted when we really know that’s not the case. Moreover, when someone is answering a survey like that, I think they have an inclination to create fires. So that’s my opinion and I’m going to hold to it,” he said.
He also went on to point out that the hedge fund industry is also for blue collar workers.
“There’s two-and-a-half trillion dollars in the hedge fund industry for a reason. People have done an amazing job in the hedge fund industry for clients and let me give a news flash for the SEC — Many blue collar workers are inside hedge funds, including SkyBridge, where we do a phenomenal job taking care of them, guiding them toward actuary numbers for their retirement.”
“Now I hope the witch hunt is over. You’re probably going to get the guy to plead guilty on something. You had 10 years to try to find something to plead him personally guilty and you couldn’t find it. He’s stuck in the corner now and he’s going to have to please guilty for his corporation and I hope it’s over with.”
We could only find part of Scaramucci’s “Fast Money” appearance online. It also comes with a disclaimer about how his opinions are not those of CNBC or NBCUniversal.
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