On this day, August 22 in the year 1944, one of the most politically active hedge fund managers was born in New Jersey, USA. His name is Paul Elliott Singer, the founder of Elliott Management, one of the oldest hedge funds in Wall Street. According to forbes.com, his net worth is $2.6 billion as of August, 2017.
Paul Singer was the son a Jewish couple, the father a pharmacist and the mother, a homemaker. He has two other siblings. He finished a degree in psychology at the University of Rochester in 1966 and received a law degree from Harvard University in 1969.
In 1977, Paul Singer founded Elliott Management with an initial capital of $1.3 million which he pooled from friends and relatives. With a strategy of investing funds in distressed debt of companies and sovereigns, the fund has since grown to $31 billion in assets under management. Although he is criticized as a “vulture capitalist” for his ruthless bullying of CEOs and suing governments instead of compromising, he defends himself that he is just playing by the rules of the market.
In 1996, Paul Singer invested in defaulted Peruvian bonds. After almost 6 years of litigation, the Peruvian Government capitulated and Paul earned 4 times what he invested. He used the same tactic with the Republic of Congo in 2007 and with Argentina in 2011.
Paul Singer has two sons with his former wife whom he divorced in 1996. He is an active campaign donor to Republican candidates. He is also a vocal supporter of same-sex marriage. His own son Andrew married his boyfriend in 2004.