Last August, we introduced readers to the hedge fund that we dubbed the “puppe master behind the US presidential election“, which also happened to be the most successful hedge fund in history : Setauket-based Renaissance Technologies (a recent analysis by LCH found that Ray Dalio’s Bridgewater, with $45 billion in absolute profits since inception, was the most successful but the ranking ignored Renaissance, which has return $10 billion more).
Formerly known best for making a staggering $55 billion since its founding, RenTec as it is better known in financial circles, also emerged as perfectly hedged when it comes to the outcome of the presidential election. On one hand, there was RenTec’s chain-smoking billionaire founder (in 2015 alone he made $1.7 billion) Jim Simons, who had donated some $10 million to Hillary Clinton’s campaign, second only to Saban Capital. In a June 2016 interview with CNBC, Jim Simons said that “if you compare the presidential candidates using the Sharpe ratio, presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump is ‘not a good investment.’”
Meanwhile, Rentec’s Co-CEO, billionaire Robert Mercer, emerged as the man who was pulling the string behind Donald Trump’s entire campaign. As the WSJ reported at the time, Mercer has longstanding ties to both people elevated to top posts in the Trump campaign. He and his daughter, Rebekah, not only poured money into the Trump campaign, but had recommended both Breitbart News chairman Stephen Bannon (they had invested $10 million in Breitbart News) and Republican pollster Kellyanne Conway, who already worked for the campaign, to join the Trump team around the time it found itself in disarray with last summer’s scandals involving Tim Manafort. (Trump returned the favor, in part, by pouring that campaign money back into a data-analytics firm co-owned by Rebekah, who was later named to Trump’s transition team executive committee.)
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Feb 23, 2017.