Monday, November 10, 2008

Hedge titans to testify on Capitol Hill

Leaders of the hedge fund industry, including Philip Falcone, Kenneth Griffin, John Paulson, James Simons and George Soros are scheduled to appear before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform on Thursday. A preview story in the Wall Street Journal notes that the Managed Funds Association and other organizations representing hedge funds are spending record amounts lobbying, according to industry insiders. The story says that having five of the best-known and wealthiest investment managers together publicly before Congress is "unprecedented." It's not going to be pretty and one can almost hear the pontification of Waxman and others now.

This blog has long argued that the hedge fund industry has done a poor job of safeguarding its reputation and defending its practices, like shorting, to the Hill, the media and others. All this lobbying by MFA sounds like too little way too late.

Waxman, it should be noted, is a grand inquisitor of all kinds of perceived high-crimes and misdemeanors. After all, he called Roger Clemens to testify about his use of steroids in Major League Baseball.

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