Hedge fund manager makes £2.2bn from £22m bet on virus impact
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Hedge fund manager makes £2.2bn from £22m bet on virus impact

Bill Ackman warned that “hell is coming” to the markets before recouping 100 times his outlay which, if confirmed, makes it one of history’s most profitable trades.

A woman wearing a face mask in Regents Street in London
A woman wearing a face mask in Regents Street in London

A Jewish hedge fund manager in the US has said he made £2.2 billion from a £22 million bet on the effects of the coronavirus.

Bill Ackman, who warned that “hell is coming” to the markets, said he recouped 100 times his outlay which, if confirmed, makes it one of history’s most profitable trades.

Ackman, whose personal wealth was put at more than $1 billion in 2018, heads Pershing Square Capital Management, and made the money hedging Pershing’s portfolio – essentially buying credit protection against steep market losses.

An activist investor and major Democratic Party donor, Ackman has called on Donald Trump to order “a 30-day shut-down” in the United States to stop the spread of the virus and minimise the loss of life.

Ackman is a philanthropist who gives to Jewish causes, including five Jewish history, scholarship and arts organisations in New York.

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