The Morning Brief: Bridgewater’s “Renovation” to Include Layoffs

Bridgewater Associates is planning to reduce its head count. The Westport, Connecticut firm announced what it calls a “renovation” that will include layoffs, according to CNBC, citing someone familiar with the matter. The world’s largest hedge fund firm reportedly said in a letter that it was “digging into the areas of inefficiency to improve them” as part of a “renovation to improve efficiencies at Bridgewater.” It added it will involve “significant changes to people, processes, and technologies,” according to the report. The letter was first published on Business Insider. Most of the layoffs will not include investment professionals, according to CNBC.

The move is somewhat surprising, given that Bridgewater recently raised $22.5 billion after opening its funds to outside money for the first time in seven years. We also recently reported that through September 5, Pure Alpha II had lost 9.4 percent for the year, while Pure Alpha was off by 6.1 percent. Bridgewater’s All Weather risk parity fund, on the other hand, was up 13.5 percent.


ValueAct Capital Management boosted its stake in Trinity Industries to 7.9 percent. In an amended 13D filing with regulators, the San Francisco activist hedge fund firm used the same language from late July when it filed its initial 13D, asserting it plans to have conversations with Trinity’s management and board of directors to discuss ways to boost its stock price. ValueAct actually took its initial stake in Trinity, a maker of railcars, in the second quarter. However, it disclosed this holding in its required 13F filing a little more than two weeks after filing its initial 13D on July 29.


Kenneth Griffin’s Citadel has hired another top executive from outside the firm. The Chicago multistrategy firm has named Gregg Berman as a managing director. He will focus on research related to market structure, market integrity, and market monitoring. He had previously spent less than one year at Ernst & Young as a principal in its financial services group, focusing on advisory services for banks, broker-dealers, asset managers, hedge funds, market exchanges and venues, and other financial service providers. Before that he spent more than five years at the Securities and Exchange Commission, where he was associate director of the regulator’s office of analytics and research in its trading and markets division. Berman is credited with leading the Commission’s analysis of the May 2010 “Flash Crash.”