Point72 Asset Management, the new family office for Steven A. Cohen, will re-open its London branch again in 2016. This former SAC Capital office, was closed years before, in a different trading period. With the US Fed now considering raising interest rates, a very debt heavy European market would seem ready to trade with "risk on", as a result. If the Greek crisis and China peak have now passed, perhaps a European economic recovery will finally start. These seem to be the background factors in the re-opening its London branch again.
Why now, and why so publicly? Family Offices like Point72 are known to be extremely secretive, like the hedge funds they compete with, so why now? President of Point72, Doug Haines said on Wall Street Week, that a key reason to be public is the hunt for talent. They now have over 850 staff and 350 investment professionals. He confirmed that the firm is hiring, in fact they hired over 100 analysts recently across 6 offices including Hong Kong, Singapore and Tokyo. In addition, they have promoted in-house analysts more than before.
This is not just media spin, as real actions have been taken to prove the point. The internal promotion culture is changing, and for the better. Again, on Wall Street Week, Doug Haynes confirmed that, "out of the 9 portfolio managers that were designated PMs within Point72, only one was an outside hire, 8 were internally developed", so joining as an analyst give you a massive edge on the road to being a PM. It worked for Fidelity, why not Point72? Compliance and technology also seem to be hiring.
It is not a hire and fire culture either. As stated on Wall Street Week, the industry average of turnover for PMs is close to 20% while at Point 72 it is less than 10%. Analysts are under 5% turnover, again very low for the industry. Doug was a programmer for the CIA in the past, and feels that "incu-tel" or the ability to incubate new technology to read documents for intelligence gathering, can be used for financial markets. This same technology is what he is hoping to drive forward support for analyst research results internally.
There are 3 mission statement points at the core of the new Point72 Asset Management. Number (1) is to the the premier asset management firm. Number (2) is to have the highest ethical & professional standards. Number (3) is to bring the best opportunities for the brightest talent. It seems that to grow top talent, you need to be public about this, and keep a healthy flow of new blood spreading across the firm.
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