Liberal hedge fund manager, Whitney Tilson, was savaged by Senator Elizabeth Warren last December on social media – despite being a major financial supporter. As a result of the waves of negative press and emotional distress he incurred because of Warren, his confidence collapsed and he was forced to shut down his business.
Investors who had their money invested with Kase Capital Management were alerted by Tison in an Investor Email on Thursday that he was returning the money and shutting down the fund. He wrote, “Reporting sustained underperformance to you was making me miserable. I couldn’t in good conscience continue to manage your money unless I had a high degree of confidence that I could turn things around.”
Despite the stock market going gangbusters, the fund was down 8% this year, and its assets had also shrunk from its peak of a $180 million in year 2010 to a mere $50 million. Although Tilson did a noble thing in handing back his investor’s money –
Tilson made the news at the end of the last year when he was targeted by Warren in a Facebook rant in which she labeled him to be a “hedge fund billionaire” who was “thrilled by Donald Trump’s economic team of Wall Street insiders.”
Warren had written, “If Trump gets his way, the next four years are going to be a bonanza for the Whitney Tilsons of the world—at the expense and pain of everyone else.”
Tilson was an odd target for Warren, as he had years earlier given approximately $2,500 to her Senate campaign and also contributed $2,700 to the Hillary Clinton campaign and a further donation of $22,300 to the DNC during the 2016 effort to defeat President Donald Trump. He had even given $1,000 to attend a speech Warren that she delivered at a Clinton fundraiser.
Tilson told the New York Times shortly after he was targeted by Warren that he agreed with the Warren’s positions on the need for financial regulation a “100%” and also that he was nowhere near being a billionaire.
“I’ve donated money to her, attended her events, and did everything in my power to stop Donald Trump. In addition, I agree with her 100% that large swaths of the financial industry have run amok and prey on vulnerable Americans, and thus strong regulation, including a muscular Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, is sorely needed.”
Tilson also wrote to Warren following the post and as an answer he received word from a Warren aide that she had decided to keep the post up, but would edit the word “billionaire” from the post.
“She asked me to relay to you that she is removing the word ‘billionaire’ from the post, as you have indicated that is factually inaccurate,” the aide emailed Tilson. “The senator has decided, however, not to remove the overall post.”
Warren apologized for the post a few days later, saying she “took it too far” and that she wished her “tone had been less heated.” She eventually deleted the social media rant.
Tilson has continued to donate to Democrats in 2017 despite his treatment at the hands of Elizabeth Warren.