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The Morning Brief: Herbalife Surges on News of Activist Chapman's Stake

Former SAC Capital Advisors LP portfolio manager Mathew Martoma pleaded not guilty to several charges related to insider trading at his arraignment on Thursday. He faces one count of conspiracy and two counts of securities fraud. Martoma reportedly is unwilling to enter into a plea deal.
Nutritional supplement maker Herbalife’s stock surged nearly 13 percent, to $36.34, on Thursday on news that activist hedge fund manager Robert Chapman of Chapman Capital now owns 35 percent of the shares. On January 10 management of the embattled company plans to hit back at Pershing Capital’s Bill Ackman with its own presentation. Let's hope they don't dispute him for three-and-a-half hours. 
Ken Griffin’s Citadel Investment Group reported in a December 24 regulatory filing that it owned a 5.4 percent stake in engine and truck maker Navistar. Famed investor Carl Icahn currently has an activist position in the stock, reporting the third largest holding at the end of the third quarter with more than 10 million shares. In October he raised his stake to more than 11.8 million shares in a public offering by the company.
Anthony Daniell has stepped down as chief executive officer of Winton Capital Management, where he has worked for the past 10 years. He will assume the role of non-executive Chairman. Tony Fenner-Leitao, who was appointed Deputy CEO in the fall of 2012, was named the new CEO. The London firm is also simultaneously introducing a new executive committee. According to sources, Daniell will continue to meet with major clients and international regulators. The firm manages $25.5 billion, including $10.5 billion in its Winton Futures Fund. The quantitative fund, led by David Harding, lost 3.5 percent in 2012. However, the fund is said to be well within the firm’s statistical predictions, which expect one down year in six. It has, in fact, experienced two down years in 15.

Follow Stephen Taub on Twitter @stephentaub

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