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The Morning Brief: Omega Advisors Likes Facebook, Drops Apple; Money Flows Out of Winton Capital

Leon Cooperman’s Omega Advisors sold its entire stake of 266,000 shares in Apple in the fourth quarter, according to a 13F regulatory filing Wednesday. At the same time, Cooperman took an initial stake of more than three million shares in Facebook, worth $84 million at year-end. His five largest holdings at the end of the fourth quarter were American International Group, which he trimmed from the third quarter; Kinder Morgan; Atlas Pipeline; KKR Financial; and Express Scripts. AIG, Atlas and KKR Financial and Apple were among his top five holdings in the prior quarter, ended September 30. In the fourth quarter, Cooperman cut his stake in Dish Network — his fifth largest holding in September — by 20 percent.

Investors have yanked $1 billion from London-based hedge fund giant Winton Capital, Reuters reported Wednesday. The systematic macro firm headed by David Harding lost 3.5 percent last year. As a result, total assets under management are down to $26 billion at the end of 2012, from $29 billion in May.

SS&C GlobeOp reported that the gross return for its index of hedge fund performance was 2.62 percent in January. It also said hedge fund flows rose a net 1.5 percent in the month. SS&C, which provides investment and financial software-driven services, said total assets under administration on its platform represent about 10 percent of estimated assets currently invested in the hedge fund industry.

While CTAs have lost money in three of the past four years, brokerage firm Newedge reported that its index of commodity trading advisors, or CTAs, rose 1.46 percent in January. The top performers in the Newedge CTA Index for January were: Altis Global Futures Portfolio (Composite), up 6.28 percent; Campbell & Co. (FME Large), up 4.05 percent; and FDO Partners (Emerging Markets Quant Currency), up 3.80 percent. The Altis and Campbell funds were the two top performers in the Newedge Trend Index, followed by Aspect Capital (Diversified), up 3.64 percent.

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