The Wall Street Journal Has Irked Ray Dalio — Again

According to a Dow Jones spokesperson, Dalio is “simply complaining about factual reporting he does not like.”

Ray Dalio (David Paul Morris/Bloomberg)

Ray Dalio

(David Paul Morris/Bloomberg)

Ray Dalio has once again taken to LinkedIn to dispute the Wall Street Journal’s reporting on his firm, Bridgewater Associates.

This time, the billionaire hedge fund manager has taken issue with a Journal article published January 31, “Ray Dalio Is Still Driving His $160 Billion Hedge-Fund Machine.” In a LinkedIn post on February 2, Dalio claimed the article, which details issues with succession planning and executive turnover at the hedge fund giant, was “filled with intentional factual errors.”

The LinkedIn post, entitled “The Wall Street Journal’s Fake and Distorted News,” does not focus on addressing specific errors in the article. Instead, Dalio spends the bulk of the post criticizing the Journal’s reporting process, claiming that writers Rachael Levy and Rob Copeland “had a goal and story in mind long before there were any facts.” The Bridgewater founder further alleged that Copeland had a conflict of interest in reporting on the hedge fund firm because he “had previously interviewed at Bridgewater and wasn’t hired because he wasn’t up to doing the job.”

According to Dalio, investigative reporters such as Levy and Copeland “gather whatever negative bits and pieces they can come up with” from anonymous sources and then “dismiss the on-the-record statements about the inaccuracies, saying that they are inconsistent with what they heard from their undisclosed sources.” The Journal’s article cites “current and former employees” of Bridgewater, noting that the firm “bars employees from independently speaking with the press” and that Bridgewater executives declined to be interviewed for the article.

“Rob Copeland and Rachael Levy are well respected journalists and their reporting is fair and accurate,” Steve Severinghaus, senior director of communications for Wall Street Journal publisher Dow Jones, said in an emailed statement. “Responses from Bridgewater Associates were solicited well in advance of publication and included in the final article. Mr. Dalio is simply complaining about factual reporting he does not like.”

[II Deep Dive: Ray Dalio Called This Wall Street Journal Story ‘Wrong.’ Dow Jones Stands by It.]

This is not the first time that Dalio has used social media to contest the Wall Street Journal’s reporting. In November, the Bridgewater co-chairman published a brief LinkedIn post in response to a Journal article originally entitled “Bridgewater Bets Big on Market Drop,” focusing on a purchase of $1.5 billion in put options.

At the time, Dalio contended that the headline was “sensationalistic,” writing that Bridgewater didn’t “have any such net bet that the stock market would fall.” In an emailed statement, Severinghaus noted that “the article does not report, as Mr. Dalio says, that Bridgewater has a ‘net’ bearish position on the stock market.” The headline of the article has since been changed to “Bridgewater Makes $1.5 Billion Options Bet on Falling Market.”

Dalio also took to LinkedIn in early 2017 after the Wall Street Journal published an article entitled “The World’s Largest Hedge Fund Is Building an Algorithmic Model From its Employees’ Brains.” The nearly 2,700-word LinkedIn post that Dalio wrote in response claimed that the article exemplified the “epidemic” of “fake and distorted media.” That essay also criticized the Journal’s reporting process, claiming that authors Copeland and Bradley Hope “chose… to push the story that they wanted to write.”

In a statement at the time, Severinghaus said that the Journal “stands by its strong reporting about Bridgewater Associates.”