Thursday, March 4, 2010

Were Hedge Funds Colluding to Drive Down the Euro?

Sean O'Grady, The Independent
Fears of a hedge fund "conspiracy" to destroy the euro gathered pace yesterday when the American authorities ordered some funds not to destroy records of their trading in the single currency. The move comes after the US Federal Reserve promised to probe claims that the use of credit derivatives by Goldman Sachs had, ironically, helped Greece enter the eurozone a decade ago. Although the latest Greek austerity plan helped to calm markets and nudged the euro higher against the dollar, traders warned that the euro's traumas were far from over. Indeed, it seems that the EU and the hedge funds are about to intensify their economic warfare, with the opening of a new front in America.
The US Department of Justice has asked a number of the hedge funds whose executives attended a dinner hosted by New York-based research and brokerage firm Monness, Crespi, Hardt & Co on 8 February, to preserve their trading histories. According to an agenda obtained by Bloomberg, those present discussed a number of "themes", including the chances of the euro falling against the dollar. Aaron Cowen, an executive at SAC Capital Advisors, David Einhorn, head of Greenlight Capital, and Don Morgan, who runs Brigade Capital Management LLC went to the dinner, as did a representative from Soros Fund Management.
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